Students gather to #prayforSyria on Risman Plaza

Kelly Powell

It’s not every night that students stand outside of the student center, holding candles in the rain and standing in a circle.

That, however, was exactly the case as students from six campus ministries came together for an Interfaith Prayer Vigil Thursday at 7 p.m. on Risman Plaza.

“We all believe in the power of prayer and wanted to gather as many people as possible,” Jose Basabe, CSA member and host of the event, said.

Catholic Student Association, Orthodox Christian Fellowship, Navigators, Student Justice for Palestine, Muslim Student Association, and United Christian Ministries were represented at the vigil.

The purpose of the vigil was to pray for Syrian conflict, soldiers and people in power.

“Prayer is a way to give back without spending money,” CSA member Lindsay Jespersen said.

The night began with a prayer from the Muslim Student Association to put the pain of Syrian people on the hearts of those in the circle. From there, prayers from varied groups included mention of God’s mercy, nearness to the broken and ability to turn away the evil and unjust.

“Prayer is a good reminder of what God has done for us and a good reminder of those who are suffering,” Bethany Resner, Navigators part-time staff member, said.

Following the group prayer were Arabic prayer from MSA, an acapella song from OCF, and a song on ukulele from CSA. Participants considered these actions a form of prayer.

“It brings me closer to my creator,” OCF member Joey Turner said.

After the open prayer time, students talked about ways to outreach regarding Syrian conflict and were also encouraged to keep praying about the topic.

“Prayer is a way of taking love, pain and care of people and setting it on wings,” MSA member Amanda Lamadanie said. “It’s a way to release emotion and to trust in something greater.”

 Kelly Powell is the religion reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].