On Thursday, May 7th, the “Day of Prayer” vigil was held at the San Bernardino City Hall north parking lot. The event was organized by Rev. Alan Rosenburg from Christian and Missionary Alliance Church, and was not a city-sanctioned event. Several speakers from various churches and religious organizations from the San Bernardino area all took part during the prayer vigil. Due to the coronavirus restrictions, a drive-in service was conducted where all participants were asked to remain in their cars during the event. Cars filled at least half of the parking lot, with an estimated 75 people attending the service.
In 1988, the Congress, by public law, called on the President to issue each year a proclamation designating the first Thursday in May as the “National Day of Prayer.” For several years, a prayer service was held at the San Bernardino City Hall where people could gather and pray for the city and nation. This was the 6th year Reverend Alan Rosenburg was appointed to Chair the committee to organize the event. Rev. Rosenburg was first asked to Chair the committee by former mayors Pat Morris and Carey Davis, and most recently by Mayor John Valdivia.
The service began at 12 p.m. Before the prayer, each of the speakers had an opportunity to conduct a scripture reading and make a comment on their area of prayer. The introduction was made by Reverend Rosenburg followed by a welcome from San Bernardino City Mayor John Valdivia. Rev. Tracy Johnson from Immanuel Baptist Church made some comments and prayed for “Personal Repentance.” Pastor Reginal Young from Pastors United prayed for the City of San Bernardino. Chaplain Ray Miller from the San Bernardino Chaplain’s Corps prayed for the elected officials.
Rev. Dan Roth from The Rock Church prayed for the first responders and those in the military service. Dr. Joshua Beckley, Pastor of the Ecclesia Christian Fellowship prayed for harmonious race relationships. Rachel Perl from the Hebrew Christian Witness prayed for the religious leaders. Pastor Larry Lee from The Gathering Place Church in San Bernardino also addressed and prayed with those in attendance. Rev. Pablo Gamaz from Iglesia Crstiana de Alianza Misionera gave the Benediction.
Rev. Rosenburg’s key Bible verse for the SB Day of Prayer was Jeremiah 29:7 “Seek the peace and prosperity of the City to which I have carried you…”
Prior to holding the “Day of Prayer” service, several changes had to be made given the various precautions that were being taken by both the city and county governments. Rev. Rosenberg contacted the SB County Board of Supervisors requesting permission to hold this event. Only two options were given by the county – host the event live online or have a drive-in event where participants would have to remain in their cars.