Lifting Up in Spirit, in Prayer

By Brandon HENSLEY

If it’s spring it must be time to “Lift Up La Crescenta” again.

That is the name of the event being held on Sunday at 2 p.m., when many people of all faiths are invited to join fellow residents and pray about something, anything.

“We’ll have a massive amount of prayer power,” said organizer Al Nunez. At least that’s what he hopes.

Here’s what is going to happen: The event will start at 2 p.m. at La Crescenta Presbyterian Church. Everyone will meet there and religious leaders will hold a “pray-off,” sort of like a warm-up to the event. Then at 2:30, they will hit the streets of La Crescenta and will gather at 12 different stations throughout the town and pray for about 15 minutes, ending with the Lord’s Prayer at 3 p.m.

But don’t worry – it won’t be a reenactment of the people from Whoville, holding hands and swaying back and forth.

“It’s more standing next to each other and praying,” Nunez said.

Nunez is a member of La Crescenta Presbyterian and came up with the idea two years ago. Last year was the inaugural event, and around 160 people showed up. This weekend, Nunez said he expects 300 to 400 people.

That shows how much it has grown in only a year, which is also reflected in the number of participating churches. Last year were four that were involved; this year there will be eight.

There will be nine street locations people can go to with a captain for each spot (Nunez will be a captain on Montrose Avenue in front of his church).

The area covered will be from Lowell to Rosemont avenues, but this time there will also be a prayer circle in Sunland-Tujunga, which will range from Lowell west to the 210 freeway.

“I was thinking of starting a prayer circle for La Crescenta and as it expanded we would include, say, Sunland-Tujunga or La Cañada,” said Nunez.

Some pastors from the eight churches are expected to show up, but this is an event put on by the people.

“It’s mostly just run by volunteers from [the churches],” Nunez said.

So what exactly will people be praying about?

“That the La Crescenta people would know the love of Jesus Christ, the gospel of Jesus,” said Nunez. He added that they will pray for firefighters, police, those unemployed, those in the military and for the youth drug problems in the foothills.

“We hope that it’s going to affect a lot of people and the people will see a lot of [Christians] can get together from a lot of different churches and agree on one thing, and that’s praying for the community,” Nunez said.

For more information, contact La Crescenta Presbyterian Church at (818) 249-6137.