Victoria students join global prayer rally
Ariel Roberts grasped the microphone and, in front of about 180 classmates, read her intentions aloud.
A prayer for the flood victims of Louisiana.
A prayer for abused children.
And a prayer for homeless animals.
Ariel, 11, said Wednesday morning was a little different than how she normally prays.
"Usually when I'm at home, I close my eyes and pray for everyone: my family and people all over the world," Ariel said.
She and her classmates came up with the list to share with the school for See You at the Pole, a global prayer event.
Students across the world join in the prayer rally by meeting at their school's flagpole to pray for their friends, families, teachers, school and nation.
Other students at Our Lady of Victory School named specific teachers and mentioned more general prayers for people coping with death or health issues, as well as prayers for strength, understanding and better choices.
"People shouldn't be ashamed of praising God," Ariel said. "I think it has a great impact that everything will be better."
Sister Laura Toman, principal of Our Lady of Victory, said See You at the Pole will become an annual event at the school.
"This fits right in with our program," Toman said, who led the school's event.
Each class voted for a delegate to announce their prayer intention to the school.
"We'd have been here all morning otherwise," Toman said. "They're very conscious of world events and what's going on."
While students at other schools read scripture or sing hymns, Toman said the important part is that they all pray.
Sister Donna Bonorden said she was amazed to find out See You at the Pole was started by 10 students more than 20 years ago in Burleson, Texas.
Since then, it has grown to more than an estimated 3 million students, she said.
"We stand in solidarity with everyone who is Christian and wants to profess those Christian beliefs," Bonorden said.
Our Lady of Victory wanted to support students across the world who are "not as free to pray as often and as a big group," Bonorden said.
"God hears prayers," Bonorden said. "Jesus said, 'Where two or more are gathered in my name, I am there.'"