BY JENNA SWAN
Courtesy of the Sylvan Lake News
The 2016 Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast is set to take place on Friday, Sept. 30th at the Sylvan Lake Community Centre marking the eighth annual community gathering to pray for local leaders and those in government.
Organized by the Sylvan Lake Ministerial, the annual event aims to lift the community together in prayer.
“The event is really about the community rallying and encouraging from a spiritual perspective,” explained Steve Rowe, a member of the organizational committee. “It shows the unity and the strength amongst our local churches and that’s a big aspect. As a group it’s important that we come together.”
He added that from a biblical perspective, people are told to pray for those in leadership and in government. The Sylvan Lake Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast also sees the community gather annually to pray for those in the medical field, local businesses as well as local youth.
Rowe explained each year organizers make it a point to make the event multi-generational inviting local youth groups and students from the high school.
Each year the event asks special guest speakers to join the community during the prayer breakfast with this year’s honoured guests being Roger and Bonita Bott, who lost their three daughters in a farming accident nearly a year ago on their family farm near Withrow.
“The theme of this year’s breakfast will be From Tragedy to Triumph – Light Overtakes the Darkness,” explained Rowe.
“From their perspective we will be hearing how they lost their three girls yes, but it was how the community rallied around them that helped them during that time.”
Rowe explained the Bott family’s story demonstrates how the strength of faith and the overwhelming response of an entire loving community can help in times of darkness.
In past years the event has seen a number of guest speakers including the Mayor of Red Deer, Tara Veer as well as a former chaplain for the Calgary Flames, Rodd Sawatzky.
This year’s Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast will again be emceed by Kevin Haugan, the longest serving member of the ministerial in Sylvan Lake.
“The true impact is we want those that are our elected officials to know that we are behind them,” Haugan said. “We like to think it means a lot to the mayor, Town council, Town staff and to other parts of our community that we pray for them, so this is a very public way of doing that.”
This event is also a great opportunity for the mayor to thank the community for helping the Town.
The catered breakfast will include a full breakfast of eggs, sausage, bacon, pancakes, waffles, fruit and muffins, among other breakfast items.
Tickets have been moving quickly for the event and seats are limited.
Organizers say the event is close to being sold out. Those wishing to purchase tickets can contact the Alliance Community Church at 403-887-8811 or by contacting Sylvan Lake Community Partners at 403-887-9989.