As I walked through the masses flooding the streets near the Washington monuments on Inauguration Day, I asked one question to the people I met: “What is your prayer for the country and the new administration?”
Considering most were dressed for the ski slopes and that so many who had trekked so far wouldn’t see anything more than lines and the back of other people’s heads all day, I thought many would turn the question inward and answer with prayers for warmth and a good spot on the mall.
But that wasn’t the case.
Pam Davis prayed for intelligence. She hoped that “smart comes back to America. We once were known for being very smart, being inventors … and now we are known for a whole different set of skills,” such as excessive weight, greed, cars and waste.
Miseah Reed from North Carolina prayed for leadership. “It’s hard to tell other countries to play nice if we don’t,” she said.
Sitting with her two young children on the ground near the Washington Monument, Karen Flowers from Georgia said she prayed for unity and that the country would rekindle its hope to work for “health, happiness, safety and security and that our children get a good education.”
Ben from Maryland, who preferred not to share his last name, prayed for understanding. People must realize Barack Obama “isn’t going to be a savior without us.”
“He can’t do it alone … we have to help him,” he said.
Ben’s friend from Philadelphia, who went just by Bill, prayed God would give Americans “patience.”
Valarie Williams said she prayed for diplomacy to solve problems “instead of war.”
And Lisa Chin from Atlanta simply prayed for “peace and equality.”
What are your prayers for the country and the new administration?