by Cris Ritchie — Editor
A few hundred people gathered at the new East Perry Elementary on Monday to begin the new school year with a blessing.
Jeff Ritchie serves as the school resource officer at Perry Central, and said for the past couple of years members of his church had gone to the county’s schools during the summer for prayer, and he thought it also would be a good thing for the county’s newest addition.
“Being that this was the new year for East Perry, I guess I just felt God dealing with me to really pray for this school and do what was good for it,” Ritchie said. “I got the idea to get enough people to form a ring that would go hand-in-hand, completely around the school in prayer.”
Ritchie said he had his doubts at first that enough people were present, and when the group, which consisted of local residents ranging from students’ parents to police officers and school board members, first attempted to circle the school they found themselves about 50 feet short. That’s when the Perry Central football team, which was practicing nearby, joined in to complete the circle.
Ritchie went on to thank those who showed up to the support the school, and said he hopes the effort illustrates that God has not been completely taken away from the schools.
“We felt like we could do that and open it up,” he said, “and show that God is important in our life and we’ve not kicked him out of our schools, and we want Him there to bless this place and bless this school.”
The county schools will get back to the classroom on Wednesday.