Power of worship

Sunday, June 10, 2018 5:49 PM
About 60 people gather Sunday at Joe Stepheson Park to pray for rain and safety for all of those battling the 416 Fire in Durango.
Pastor Shawn O'Reilly prays Sunday at a community gathering at Joe Stephenson Park.
Lora Porter holds her daughters, Lucy and Paige, while holding hands with Trish Sibley, left, during a community prayer service Sunday at Joe Stephenson Park in Bayfield.
A sign for 'Prayers for Durango' signals for people to gather Sunday in Joe Stephenson Park.
At the conclusion of Sunday's prayer service in Bayfield, smoke from the 416 Fire is visible to the east.

About 60 people and clergy gathered Sunday in Joe Stephenson Park to ask for rain and pray for safety for firefighters, pilots, other first responders, and evacuees of the 416 Fire.

Scott Kujath of Pine Valley Church prayed "for a holy guard and shield" around the personnel and also requested divine wisdom for those in command of the emergency teams.

"This is not about us but a great God that we serve, and a great body of Christ," he said.

Shawn O'Reilly of Pine Valley Church quoted Second Chronicles, Chapter 7, Verses 13 and 14 from the Old Testament.

"When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land."

He asked the attendees to lift their faces to heaven in prayer and repent their sins.

Ray Wallace of Pine Valley Church of Christ asked for blessing on the homes and animals being evacuated, as well as the firefighters.

Brian Caselles of Calvary Presbyterian Church offered the dismissal.

"It's good we're doing something," he said after the event, noting that churches and clergy have a role to play in a time of crisis, and taking services to people is an important task now.

Supplies were collected for firefighters and evacuees, including many who are camping in the Vallecito area after their neighborhoods were evacuated last week.

The service was organized by Liz Herring-Tibbetts, with assistance from Kayla Patterson and Anne Cook.