Hundreds show up across the Coast to ‘park and pray’ for healthcare workers
PASCAGOULA, Miss. (WLOX) - Gratitude poured out of people’s hearts across the Coast Thursday as hundreds gathered at a socially safe distance to thank healthcare workers.
Vehicles lined up in the parking lot at both Singing River hospitals in Pascagoula and Ocean Springs, as well as Memorial Hospital in Gulfport.
With instructions to stay inside their vehicles, people waved and held up signs. Radios were turned to a Christian music station and with words of faith and hope floating through the air, people lifted their hands to pray for the many healthcare workers who have becomes the heroes of the coronavirus pandemic.
One of the organizers for the Jackson County park-and-pray event was Pastor Eric Camp with Action Church. He said Thursday’s display included around two dozen churches. It’s an outpouring of support for the community that he will never forget.
“The fact that ‘The Church’ united outside our walls to actually BE the Church and make a difference In the lives of all the medical professionals and patients at both Singing River Hospital and Ocean Springs Hospital will forever be remembered as a powerful time of unity and hope for our area,” said Camp in a Facebook post. “Looking around tonight and seeing all the pictures and videos has really made a forever difference in my life for sure.”
Brian Johns, who attends Camp’s church, was one of many who couldn’t hold back the tears.
“My pastor is right next to me. I looked over and I said, ‘Look at the roof,’ and the place just lost it," said Johns. "I know the instructions gone out were not to honk, but as soon as they came out you could just feel the emotions swell up and horns start blowing up. It was just a real, it felt like a real organic, real natural response to just pour out our thanks to these people that are taking care of our friends, our family, it’s just overwhelming.”
At Memorial Hospital in Gulfport, the church Pentecostals of the Gulf Coast gathered outside to sing “Amazing Grace” and lift their hands up in prayer.
“Thank you to the community for your support,” said Memorial Hospital in a Facebook post. “It means so much that you thought of us. What a beautiful, creative, unexpected socially-spaced gesture to let the employees know you are with us. Stay safe!”
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