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2017 Community Prayer Breakfast to be held May 4

Cypress Lake United Methodist Church hosts event at Harborside Event Center, goal of bridging communities, bringing neighborhoods together

The Southwest Florida community is invited to observe the National Day of Prayer during the 2017 Community Prayer Breakfast on Thursday, May 4 at Harborside Event Center, located at 1375 Monroe St. in Fort Myers. Coordinated by local faith-based organizations with support from the City of Fort Myers, this free, ticketed event brings the community together in unified prayer. In addition to a buffet-style breakfast beginning at 6 a.m., keynote speaker Dr. Lucille O’Neal and guest speaker Art Holst will inspire the attendees with their motivational and entertaining personal stories, tied to faith and humanity.

Randy Henderson, Mayor of the City of Fort Myers, will emcee the prayer breakfast, with music from the Fort Myers Symphonic Mastersingers in collaboration with choirs from area churches and synagogues.

Registration for the 2017 Community Prayer Breakfast is required to obtain a guest pass, as seating is limited. Guest passes are required for event entry, and the community can request tickets online at cypresslakeumc.com/prayerbreakfast/.

Dr. Lucille O’Neal, mother of retired-NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, received her bachelor’s degree from Bethune-Cookman University in Business Administration, earned a Master of Arts from the University of Phoenix in Organizational Management and her doctorate from Bethune-Cookman University in Human Letters. Author of acclaimed book, “Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go,” O’Neal values empowering women and men in hopes of overcoming obstacles while remaining an unwavering faith and obedience to God’s directions for a victorious life.

Art Holst is a three-year World War II veteran and ranked as a first lieutenant and later a captain in the Infantry led by General George Patton, one of the top U.S. commanders during World War II. Holst was honored to be a member of the National Football League’s (NFL) officiating staff for 15 years, officiating four Championship games and Super Bowl VI and XII. A Knox College graduate, Holst was a successful salesman for 10 years and a successful business owner, and now uses his broad business background as a foundation for his inspirational messages and enthusiastic lessons that captivate audiences across the country.

“Our goal this year is to help bring the people of this community together for a time of prayer and healing,” said Rev. Israel Suarez, Founder and CEO of Nations Association Charities and a founder of the Community Prayer Breakfast. “The prayer breakfast is for all people, so we’ve put together a program of speakers that appeal to multiple generations and a diverse population. In addition to bringing together community leaders and professionals, our goal is to reach people in local neighborhoods, so we can truly bring the community together for a time of prayer.”

The National Day of Prayer is an annual observance on the first Thursday of May, inviting people of all faiths to join in unified prayer for continued blessings on the nation. Every year, local, state, and federal observances are held from sunrise to sunset across the nation. It is estimated that more than two million people attend more than 30,000 events observing the holiday, organized by more than 40,000 volunteers around the nation. The Fort Myers community has been honoring the National Day of Prayer since the inception of the Community Prayer Breakfast in 1988. Over the years, an increasing number of businesses have stepped in to support the event, through sponsorships and donations.

For more information, call 239-223-8458 or email cpbreakfast@yahoo.com.

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