Covington breakfast set to pray for legislative session

COVINGTON — In preparation for a new year at the Capitol, the Covington community’s annual Legislative Prayer Breakfast will take place at First Baptist Church on Friday, Jan. 10.

The event, sponsored by the Covington Rotary and Kiwanis clubs, has gathered more than 150 local community members and politicians.

The idea of a community prayer breakfast in Newton County originated seven years ago with a group of men who meet every Friday morning to pray for the community, Superior Court Judge Samuel Ozburn said.

“Bob Rutland, Ruel Parker, Ken Wynne, Horace Johnson and myself were aware that a National Prayer Breakfast has been held each year in Washington, D.C., and hosted by Congress since 1953,” Ozburn said. “We felt that it was important to remind our local legislators that this community supports them by praying for wisdom as they return to Atlanta for the beginning of the legislative session in January.”

A light breakfast and coffee will begin at 7 a.m. Springfield Baptist Church Pastor Eric Lee will give the opening prayer at 8 a.m. The Legislative Prayer Breakfast is free and open to the public.

“Those in attendance are encouraged to pray not just for their legislators but for all our elected leaders, nationally and locally, our school system and teachers, and for the spiritual growth of Newton County,” Ozburn said.

DeKalb County School District Superintendent Michael Thurmond will be the keynote speaker.

The district serves nearly 99,000 students with more than 13,400 employees, the third largest district in Georgia.

Thurmond was raised in Clarke County and in 1986, he became the first black elected to the Georgia General Assembly from the county since reconstruction.

During his tenure, Thurmond wrote legislation that provided more than $250 million in tax relief to Georgia’s senior citizens and working families. After his legislative service, he led the state Division of Family and Children’s Services and directed Georgia’s transition from welfare to work.

Thurmond’s creation of the Work First program has helped more than 90,000 welfare-dependent families in the state move from dependence into the workforce.

“It is our hope that those who attend will leave with a renewed vision for our community and encouraged to know that there are many in our community who are like minded, knowing that if we are united in prayer, regardless of our church or denomination, we have One who will help us in our efforts to improve our lives and our community,” Ozburn said.

If you go

What: Covington community’s annual Legislative Prayer Breakfast

When: 7 a.m. Friday, Jan. 10

Where: First Baptist Church, 1176 Elm St. NE, Covington

Cost: Free