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Why people crowded on the square to pray on Thursday, May 2
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Dozens gather in downtown Gainesville Thursday, May 2, 2019, for the annual National Day of Prayer. The annual event featured prayers for church, family, life, military, government, media, education and business. - photo by Scott Rogers

Hundreds of people gathered on the square in Gainesville on Thursday, May 2 for one purpose — the National Day of Prayer.

“When everybody comes together and we petition God, it’s a powerful front,” Choices Pregnancy Center Executive Director Lee Koz said. “It helps people focus on what the issues are.”

Greg and Brandy Sandoval kicked off the event with a warm welcome at noon. Art Gallegos, co-founder of Latinos Conservative Organization in Gainesville, followed with the opening prayer in both Spanish and English.

“With prayer in general, we pray in the language we know,” Gallegos said. “It united us as a whole and as children of God. I was very honored and blessed to be able to partake and open up the event.”

Gallegos said he noticed an increase in the Latino and Hispanic participation, including eight different Latino pastors.

He hopes next year the number of participants in the Latino community will grow.

People rotated for an hour to different “prayer stations.” Each station offered different prayer points including church, family, life, military, government, media, education and business.

Koz, who led the life section, said he focused on praying for the respect for life from conception to death, that people understand everyone has a purpose and for the end of the sex trafficing industry.

“I believe that when we pray, it has an impact on our reality,” Koz said. “The National Day of Prayer is a very important event.”

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