Fort Bliss prays for the nation, for hope
FORT BLISS, TEXAS — Approximately 500 Fort Bliss and El Paso citizens attended the National Prayer Breakfast Observance at the Centennial Banquet and Conference Center, Feb. 28 at East Fort Bliss.
“This shows a commitment to pray for our nation, our families and our military,” said Chaplain (Col.) Peter Baktis, Fort Bliss senior chaplain. “We had 425 people last year; we have more than 550 people this year.”
“This is the largest prayer breakfast we’ve had,” said Maj. Gen. Dana J. H. Pittard, 1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss commanding general. “This is spiritual fitness at its finest … there’s so much for us to be thankful for.”
The national prayer breakfast allowed members of local community to gather and pray for the needs of this country.
Pittard honored fallen Soldiers, and asked attendees to “pray for us to continue looking after each other.”
During the breakfast, 1AD chaplains led the prayers for our military, our families, our nation and our leaders; special music was performed and scripture was read to prepare the hearts and minds of attendees for the message from guest speaker Chaplain (retired Col.) Arthur Pace, executive director of Armed Services Ministry.
“We are in a place where we believe we can do anything we want,” said Pace, “but for those chasing what you want and tasting hardships … there is hope [under] the shepherd … and healing on the others side; are you following the right shepherd?”
Pace spoke on the 23rd Psalm; he went into a brief history of the psalm, the history of King David and some of the struggles David had before he was king.
“The Lord is my shepherd,” paraphrased Pace. “I have everything I need. I may not have everything I want but I have everything I need …”
“Some of us in our lives are in a terrible place … maybe things are not quite right, [but] we will make it through with faith and confidence,” Pace said.
As Pace continued in the 23rd Psalm, he quoted the verse “He makes me lie down in green pastures.”
“Sometimes we take for granted what is important in our lives,” said Pace. “Many of us are tackling the challenges of our lives with a dull axe, maybe we need a rest.
When we rest we can sharpen our axes … let God give us rest and sharpen your axe … [don’t be] … so busy that we miss [the] green grass for us.”
“Spiritual fitness is the most important, it gives Soldiers hope,” Pittard said. “When you have hope, you can do anything.”
“The National Prayer Breakfast was a tremendous success and went off without a hitch,” said Chaplain (Capt.) Sarah Tarpley, 123rd Brigade Support Battalion, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division “We all enjoyed a fantastic meal, wonderful fellowship, anointed music and a truly inspirational message.”