Monday, February 21, 2011

Praying for the haters

Posted By on Mon, Feb 21, 2011 at 3:52 PM


CNN has picked up on a novelty in Colorado Springs aviation: Helicopter flights that allow pastors to literally pray over the town.

"They call Colorado Springs 'Little Jerusalem' for good reason," the CNN reporter begins, incorrectly. If this really were Little Jerusalem there would be considerably more temples and mosques, but we get the point. Colorado Springs is one religious town, and a lot of our fellow citizens probably do spend a good deal of time praying, even if just from the ground.

Will Sanders, a local helicopter pilot who runs the company Colorado Vertical, told CNN that one day every month he will take local pastors up for free, so that they can bless large swaths of the city in a single prayer. He said that he believes that "prayer works, and I want to take prayer warriors up to pray for their community. Inspire them to see it from a different angle, from a different view."

On the winter day that the CNN reporter tagged along, Sanders was flying two pastors from the evangelical Vanguard Church, Alan Briggs and Jonathan Madrid.

Briggs and Madrid prayed for the city's military families, CNN reported, and for the city's high schools. They prayed for more Spanish-speaking churches. They prayed for the city's "spirit of consumerism."

And, would you believe, they prayed for us at the Independent. While we didn't notice the blessings sprinkling down on our heads at the time, we still got a kinda warm and funny feeling later to find out that we were included in their prayers.

And it would have been a really neat gesture, too, if it hadn't been so oddly passive-aggressive:

We bank to the left and pass over the offices of The Independent, an alternative free weekly newspaper that has been critical of the evangelical community.

“We pray for The Independent and particularly publisher John Weiss. We pray for a partnership between such a sometimes hateful organization,” Briggs says.

A minute later, after a bit of quiet, he adds, “That we would be marked by our love and not by our judgment.”

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