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Community invited to gather and pray for academic year

Community invited to gather and pray for academic year

At the first annual Community On Our Knees event on the Square in Covington, a family gathers to pray for success in the upcoming school year. (Special Photo)

At the first annual Community On Our Knees event on the Square in Covington, a family gathers to pray for success in the upcoming school year. (Special Photo)

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Youth and adults alike prayed together at the 2012 Community On Our Knees event. (Special Photo)

Pulling together what she calls a “community of faith,” Claudia Minge and other volunteers are getting ready for the second annual Community On Our Knees event on the Square in Covington. More than a dozen churches are working together for the prayer event, which will be held Saturday, Aug. 3 in downtown Covington.

Minge, who is coordinating the event, said last year’s Community On Our Knees was a huge success.

“People were so overwhelmed by the event last year,” Minge said. “It was one of the most spiritual events I have ever attended. You truly felt the sense of community and the presence of God with us that night. We sang great, great praise music and the prayers that so many people got up and led were just amazing.”

Inspired by the Toby Mac song “City On Our Knees,” the first Community On Our Knees event in Newton County last year — as is the case this year — is designed to celebrate the start of the school year and to ask for God’s blessings and protection.

Fourteen churches are working together for this year’s Community On Our Knees during which people from across the region are encouraged to come to the Square to pray for the upcoming school year, particularly for students, families, teachers, administrators, bus drivers, janitors, cafeteria workers, board of education members and other school, city and county officials and civil servants.

The second annual Community On Our Knees prayer event begins at 7 p.m. with prayers being offered for public, private and home schooled students and families.

“Summer will soon be coming to an end and the 2013-14 school year will be back in session the first of August,” Minge said. “The children we are educating today are the leaders of our community in the future. In this day and time, students face the pressures of competitive grades, competitive sports and the fine arts, pressures of drugs, violence, and social acceptance.

“Parents, school administration, teachers, and all school employees face the challenges to teach, guide and lead these children to be successful, responsible adults. Our community officials and civil servants face the challenge of providing the best facilities, resources, protection, environment and community to raise our children in. Families struggle with pressures or lack of jobs, sickness and society pressures.”

Minge said the Community On Our Knees event is filled with prayer, praise music, fellowship and school and community pride. Those attending the event are invited to wear their school colors or shirts with the name of their school on them. Everyone is also encouraged to bring lawn chairs.

A prayer wall and prayer center will be available on the Square that Saturday from 9 a.m. through the evening’s prayer event. Everyone in the community is invited to come by and spend time in prayer, as well as leave their prayer stone on the prayer wall.

“As we gather representing our different schools, different churches, different families, we will leave as a community united in prayer for each other and for a great school year,” Minge said.

She said churches from many denominations have come together to make this event possible.

“They have come together as a community of faith to lead this prayer service,” she said.

Church members from across the county have signed up to help throughout the day as people come to the Square to pray and to put their stones on the prayer wall.

The second annual Community On Our Knees event is a time for people of all ages to come together and begin the new school year with prayer. For more information, visit the Community On Our Knees Facebook page.

Beth Sexton is a freelance writer based in Gwinnett County. If you have a story idea, contact Karen Rohr, features editor, at karen.rohr@rockdalecitizen.com.