Dozens Gather for Local Prayer Event

By Geena Martinez
NewsWest 9

ODESSA - A controversial prayer event backed by Governor Rick Perry touched many right here in the Basin. On Saturday morning, a group of Christians held a prayer event of their own.

It's been a controversial event ever since it was announced by Governor Perry.

Dubbed "The Response," the Governor's call for prayer and fasting Saturday meant one thing for this group of people: coming back to Christ.

"The phrase that was really laid on my heart by God was it's time for Christians to stop living Christianity within the confines of the church and get it back in the public eye," Travis Hatcher said.

Hatcher and his wife organized the "Odessa Response" for those who couldn't make it to Houston for the real thing.

"The turnout was amazing," Hatcher said. "To see the Christian community come out and be counted was absolutely amazing. I really believe our founding fathers founded this country on a moral code that comes straight from Christianity, one form or another."

But Hatcher and several others in the crowd said that code has been lost in our current government.

"That's why I'm here, to ask him to heal our land and heal our country," Debbie Boatright said.

"I think that he (Perry) loves the Lord and he really believes that our state needs God," Gia McDaniel said.

Many national groups have shot down "The Response" calling it a political stunt for Perry, but not everyone agreed.

"It's a blessing you know, I love Governor Perry and I thank God for him because he took a stand for God like we took a stand for him when we came out here today," McDaniel said.

Others said stunt or not, they're just glad Perry stepped up.

"Whatever the motivation, he's called Christians to action and I respect that," Boatright said.

"I really hope this sparks something that we see more often," Hatcher said.