Suggested Event Ideas for Celebrating the National Day of Prayer
in Your Community
Most of the materials you may need can be found at the NDP Home site
• Have a prayer station at the YMCA.
• Encourage local residents to tie red, white and blue ribbons on car antennas beginning in late April to announce NDP.
• Get local bankers to advertise NDP on their marquee signs. Ask for permission to hang NDP banners from main street light poles (local businessmen may help cover the costs if asked).
• Bring fresh flower arrangements to the offices of local officials with a card commemorating NDP.
• For an inexpensive large banner, obtain a photographer’s backdrop. After you have finished painting and decorating it, put clear contact paper over it, fold the top edge down for a rope channel and you’re all set to hang it in a prominent place.
• In March or April, have an NDP information booth at a community fair. Give away prizes, such as an NDP T-shirt, NDP Bookmark , etc. Also, have a sign-up list for anyone willing to help on your local organizing committee.
• At your local observance, have a senior citizen give testimony of a long life spent walking with the Lord and how prayer has affected his or her life.
• Ask local cable access TV stations to provide coverage of your event and notify nursing homes, hospitals and other places where people are “shut in” of how they can view that coverage.
• Use Chicago’s “Prayer Points” idea in large cities for people who can’t attend a group prayer event. They stationed people at downtown intersections with an NDP sign and invited them to stop for a moment to pray for the country and our leaders.
• Have someone recite the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish or other appropriate languages depending on the people groups in your area. This may be particularly effective with a naturalized citizen, especially when combined with a testimony from that person about the blessings of living in America.
• Begin your observance with a rabbi or cantor from your local synagogue sounding the shofar, the traditional Jewish ram’s horn used to call the people to prayer.
• Hold observances at state capitols, the steps of county courthouses and city halls, major plazas and parks, sports stadiums or outdoor amphitheaters. Gather a committee to help with all the details such as sound equipment, program and advertising/promotion. Remember to obtain the necessary permission and permits well in advance of the first Thursday in May. Use the NDP Program Covers (and ask a local printer to donate the printing).
• Organize a “ring around the (courthouse, city hall)” event. Completely encircle the building with participants holding hands to pray for God’s direction and blessing on all that goes on within the building.
• Organize a candlelight vigil at the state capitol and march around the entire state complex. The prayer walk can be led by various intercessors who pray at different locations throughout the walk.
• Use the NDP Adopt-a-Leader program to “adopt” a city, county, state or federal official and commit to praying for that person for one year. Send a note to the official stating that you’ll be keeping them in prayer on a regular basis throughout the coming year. Communicate regularly with your official to remind him/her of your commitment and ask for specific prayer requests.
• Ask local businesses to sponsor an ad for the National Day of Prayer on grocery or shopping bags.
• Contact an area printer for a donation of posters and programs for your event. Ask restaurants to use NDP place mats on their tables during the week of National Day of Prayer.
• Invite a local high school band to perform at your National Day of Prayer observance. A color guard, composed of area military personnel or Boy/Girl Scouts, could present the colors at your community event. Let the Scouts know that their participation in the event will help fulfill the requirements for the “God and Country” badge.
• Invite local veterans and active duty military personnel in your community to an observance honoring them specifically. This could be held at the community’s veterans memorial. Chaplains, military bands and honor guards can be included in the program.
• Write a letter to local public officials inviting them to your community observance, listing time, location and speakers. Let them know they will personally be prayed for. If they are unable to attend, ask for specific prayer requests. Include both an NDP History Sheet and an Adopt-a-Leader Brochure with your correspondence.
• Contact advertising companies for a donation of space on city bus advertisements.
• Call your local cable television or newspaper and ask that a notice of your local National Day of Prayer observance be included in their community calendar. Generally, this is a free service.
• Contact nearby prison chaplains and encourage them to plan a National Day of Prayer observance for the inmates. Better yet, ask the chaplains to encourage the inmates to organize the observance themselves. Make NDP Posters available for them to post on bulletin boards.
• Ask if an NDP observance can be held at a local juvenile home. Bring a group to the home to pray for God’s will in the lives of these young people, for reconciliation with their families and for His direction in their futures. Pass out NDP Bookmarks to the residents.
• Put together small groups at the rest stops along interstate and major highways in your state. Create signs to direct anyone wishing to join the group to pray while they stop. Hand out NDP Stickers .
• Contact hospitals in your city and request that a small card be placed on patient trays at lunchtime on the National Day of Prayer. Create table tents.