Napa Methodists praying for peace in the U.S.

November 05, 2020

Pastor Marylee Sheffer (Napa, California) launched a 24-hour peace vigil preceding the Nov 3 election.

Using a sign-up software called Doodle, members of the congregation signed up for prayer in 15- minute increments—as many as they could string together—starting on Sunday Nov. 1 and concluding Monday Nov. 2. The vigil was advertised on Facebook and anyone outside the church was welcome to join in.

In the invitational article, the power of prayer was illuminated: “Prayer is powerful, moving us in silence to the depths of our souls, where the infinite peace of God resides. The Dalai Lama claims world peace expands from the peace claimed within individuals. In this spirit we are seeking volunteers to take, in any number of fifteen-minute increments of day or night, to keep a silent prayerfulness to uncover the peace in your own depths and allow it to expand outward to the farthest boundaries of our turbulent country. And in this, we will be helping to create peace through prayer.”

One inspired person recruited relatives in Sweden (filling some of the wee hour slots, since that country is 8 hours ahead), Arizona and Los Angeles. When Pastor Marylee signed up, she found only the 2:00 am slot still available, so she set her alarm accordingly. When the vigil ended, she extended the prayers-for-peace invitation, asking everyone to keep up the peace prayers in any time they had available, throughout the whole election process.