COPPERAS COVE — Like the animals to Noah’s Ark, they just kept coming.
Motorcyclists from throughout Central Texas roared into Dave’s Ice House in Copperas Cove to become “one voice united in prayer” as part of the National Day of Prayer on Thursday.
Greg “Bones” Franklin of Killeen rides with the Disciples of Christ.
“Our cities need strengthening as do our schools and our homes. When we pray, we need to pray big. Here, we pray in many voices to carry one prayer to God,” Franklin said.
As one motorcyclist strummed his guitar to the familiar tune of “Amazing Grace,” event organizer and Chaplain Joel Lytle opened the event as the crowd of bikers continued to grow on the back patio.
“We wanted to think a little outside the box for this day. The challenge was finding a place where bikers would come. And, they will come to Dave’s. There’s a worship service here monthly,” Lytle said.
Dave McBride, owner of Dave’s Ice House, led the prayer for business as seven others led prayers for the nation, government, church, military, families, education and the media.
“It’s not often you see a bar owner leading a group in prayer,” said motorcyclist Marc George, referring to McBride. “We wanted different people doing all different segments. We want to get more people involved and we do not all go to the same church.”
Dennis Ng, of Nolanville, prayed for the nation.
“We need to pray for this nation and get (the nation) right,” Ng said.
“This nation is going the wrong way. Our country is going down the tubes. We can’t fix it, but God can.”
Monty Van Horn, the pastor of Gatesville’s Highway 2 Heaven Church, led the prayer for the churches.
“My heart mourns the fact that we say we are the body of Christ but don’t act like it,” he said, denoting abortion and homosexuality. “We have churches that have changed their tolerance to acceptance. Our own churches have become beyond tolerant.”
Following the prayers, the bikers climbed on their 800-pound bikes.
The crowd had now grown to more than 60 as they revved their engines and roared down U.S. Highway 190 to the Bell County Expo Center, where they lifted their voices once again carrying a single message to the Lord — “one voice united in prayer.”