STEUBENVILLE - Three city women are preparing to ask for God's help in dealing with the negative issues facing the community.
"We are planning this Day of Repentance because we as a city benefit. We will pray for the benefits for ourselves, our children and our children's children.
stated Bernadine White.
PLANNING — Bernadine White, left, and Katie Gesto discussed plans for the Day of Repentance to be held Saturday afternoon in front of the Jefferson County Courthouse. Gesto said the event is open to everyone in the area who would like to pray for themselves and the community. - Dave Gossett
"God asks his children to ask for forgiveness. In the absence of light, darkness will prevail. I plan on praying for our city, our city officials, our police officers and our firefighters," noted Katie Gesto.
The Day of Repentance is scheduled to start at 1 p.m. and continue until 6 p.m. Sunday in front of the Jefferson County Courthouse.
Gesto said the first two hours will be praise and worship and Scripture readings.
"From 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. we will focus on prayers for the city," added Gesto.
"We believe God is asking us to be part of a movement here in Steubenville. We want to be a fire starter for this movement and the beginning of a revival in our community. Prayer will change our city. And we are asking every church and congregation to join us Sunday to pray for a revival in our city," continued Gesto.
White said the Day of Repentance is not about highlighting a church or a group of people.
"We need everyone to get involved. We want different people in the community to help lead the prayers and worship Sunday. We are asking God to be with us as we pray and worship Sunday. If God is with us Sunday afternoon we will see people change for the better," White said.
"God calls us into the darkness. Jesus ran into the dark places. A little light can dispel the darkness. We want to help change the negative attitudes so we can see our city turn around. Faith-based prayer can turn our city around," White said.
"I view the Day of Repentance as an opportunity for me to ask God for forgiveness and to please return his favor to our city. This is a city I love and a city that my son, Lee, loved. I want to ask God to instruct and guide me to be the best he has created me to be. I am asking him to guide me to be the best mother, friend, employee, sister, servant and citizen of this wonderful city of Steubenville," said Cookie West.
"I believe God wants us to humble ourselves and to understand that we need his help. It's no secret that evil permeates our world today, influencing our young and old alike. The devil is breaking down our moral fiber and offering flashy earthly substitutes for the word of God. An individual who lives to please God understands that their fight is not against flesh and blood, but the fight is spiritual against the devil. Therefore you can only win the battle with God's strength, dependent on the word of God and through prayer. I am a Christian that lives to do the will of God and to please him and I believe the Day of Repentance gives me the opportunity to publicly show him that I acknowledge his infinite power," West said.
Gesto said a number of area clergy is supporting the Day of Repentance, "and the list is growing."
"We hope we will see people join us to lead prayers or read Scripture. We can be from different churches and different faiths but we can also come together to honor Jesus," she noted.
"I also want to thank Jefferson County Sheriff Fred Abdalla and the Steubenville officials for helping us make this day possible. Please bring a blanket or lawn chair and stay as long as you can Sunday. We want to create a revival that will grow and continue to transform our city," Gesto said.
"And we have a video documentary about Clay County, Ky. 'Appalachian Dawn' is very inspiring because it's about a community like ours that has experienced great transformation. I have the films, so if anyone wants to show it in their churches or other venues, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (740) 284-2587," Gesto said.