The day to pray in the U.S.A.

Visions of people praying all over the nation and for it were a reality locally as Barnwell County communities came together May 6 for the National Day of Prayer.

Services were held around the county including one at the Williston First Baptist Church.

The Rev. Dan Fogle, of Rosemary Baptist Church in Williston led the services, but ministers from around the area assisted as each prayed for a specific issue.

The National Day of Prayer was established by Congress in 1952 as an annual event on the first Thursday of May.

"I think it is a great time for the communities to come together, especially in times like these," Fogle said of the day of prayer.

Barnwell and Blackville also held its own observances of this day of divine supplication. Barnwell had about 40 people gather around the sundial at the Circle in downtown to pray.

"We focused prayer on seven major areas of society - family, church, education, government, media, military and business," said Larry Hutto with the Barnwell County Ministerial Association of the Barnwell event.

Hutto said in April U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb ruled the recognition of the National Day of Prayer by Congress and the president as unconstitutional, but stayed the ruling pending appeal.

The observance of the National Day of Prayer in Washington D.C. featured Christian author and speaker Max Lucado.

In Blackville, the faithful gathered at the Blackville Community Center that evening for its municipal service.

Fogle coordinated a National Day of Prayer when he worked at Savannah River Site, he said.

Fogle said it was great to see all denominations come together with a single purpose, "to pray for the nation."

"Every day ought to be a day of prayer," Fogle said.

Fogle, along with other ministers in the area, read from a prayer guide designed to have all groups praying about the same issues. After each minister read, they would pray for that specific issue.

Those issues ranged from national leaders, the military and public education nationally and locally.

The theme for the 2010 observance is "Prayer For Such a Time As This." The theme of each year's service is chosen by the National Day of Prayer Task Force.