Last updated: August 24. 2013 12:25PM - 376 Views

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LIMA — A local church pastor is calling on members of his congregation to offer a prayer for first responders in Allen County in hopes it will keep them safe on the job.

Pastor Arthur Butler of Providence Missionary Baptist Church came up with the idea to assign names of first responders to each of the 150 members of the church so they can say a prayer for all first responders each day for a month, said LaBarron Springer, a church trustee and administrator.

Each church member also will write the name of the first responders on a handkerchief and place it at the altar for a special prayer each Sunday. Butler also will say a prayer every day for a month inside the church for the responders.

Lima Police Chief Kevin Martin, Allen County Sheriff Sam Crish, Lima Fire Chief Mark Heffner and Lima Mayor Dave Berger will attend a special service Sunday at the church that kicks off the event. The service begins at 10 a.m. and is open to the public.

“It’s our way of saying thanks for the services you are providing,” Springer said.

None of the members of the church is a first responder and there was not a specific event that spurred the service, Springer said.

Some members of the church will take up to three names to make sure all first responders are covered. The agencies are providing the names of the first responders, Springer said.

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