Dr. Leo Hastings is an Ocean Springs veterinarian. His office is the one spot on Highway 90 where you can see community support for the Arbogasts. His marquee asks you to remember Jessie in your prayers. "It just struck me that it's the kind of a thing that his parents probably could use a little encouragement right now," the veterinarian said. "I'm sure they're hurting right now."
The doctor believes your prayers could ease the pain of a family who's eight year old boy suffered massive injuries from two shark bites. The family's priest shares that belief in the power of prayer. Father Bernard Farrell of St. Alphonsus Catholic Church said, "It's my belief and my hope that God is looking out for this little man and indeed for his family."
Father Farrell has talked with the Arbogast family since the Friday night shark attack over in Pensacola. He told them "pretty much what I've told you. That they are in our thoughts and in our hearts and in our prayers. We just want them to know that. We hope it's a source of consolation for them."
Every morning, about 100 people attend a St. Alphonsus mass. A prayer for Jessie has become an important part of the service. "It's our belief," Father Farrell said, "that whenever we pray that God hears our prayers."
Dr. Hastings hopes that based on his sign, the entire city of Ocean Springs will say a prayer for Jessie Arbogast. "I can imagine that maybe the community outpouring will be a lot more when he does come home. And I think that will probably be a nice day in Ocean Springs."