Assemblies of God SearchSite GuideStoreContact Us

Homosexual rights activists gain influence in public schools (10/17/04)

Church’s prayer births children’s ministry (10/17/04)

Partner program revitalizes dying church (10/10/04)

Church music festival attracts variety of visitors (10/10/04)

Churches urge compassion for alienated smokers (9/19/04)

Youth ride wooden waves in church parking lots (9/12/04)

A/G, COGIC join forces through inner-city campus (9/12/04)

Christians respond to victimized women and children (8/29/04)

Growing slavic church shares new facility (8/29/04)

Couple embarks on capitol prayer tour (8/29/04)

ADHD requires multifaceted treatment approach (8/22/04)

Small congregation grows — by planting churches (8/22/04)

‘Under God’ stays in Pledge of Allegiance, at least for now (8/8/04)

Church reaches out to those feeling loss (8/8/04)

Churches act pre-emptively to reduce risk of abuse (7/25/04)

Credit cards ensnare record number of Americans (7/25/04)

Church helps out with donated CD, recycled buses (7/25/04)

New wave of pastors minister to emerging adults (7/18/04)

‘Walking Witnesses’ raise thousands for missions (7/18/04)

Healing center offers alternative medicine (7/18/04)

Growing number of Hispanics impact economy (7/11/04)

'Busy' couple finds time for compassion ministry (7/11/04)

Hand-copied Bible leaves 40-year legacy (7/11/04)

Pastor ends hunger strike when strip club promises to sell (6/27/04)

‘Military survival kit’ requests inundate A/G (6/27/04)

Fourth of July outreach draws thousands (6/27/04)

Drivers warned to steer clear of distractions (6/27/04)

Pastors face more counseling demands (6/20/04)

Church uses touch of ‘flavor’ to reach community (6/20/04)

Outrageous self-expression often starts, stops at home (6/13/04)

Runner raises $5,200 for Convoy of Hope (6/13/04)

Euphemisms tempt Christians to conveniently shed sin, guilt (5/30/04)

Funds for Easter play buy groceries instead (5/30/04)

Identity theft threatens millions of Americans (5/23/04)

Spanish speakers face challenges, opportunities in United States culture (5/16/04)

Health experts implore Americans to get fit (5/9/04)

Leaders say Christian faith stems recidivism (4/25/04)

Riders feel at home in Orlando sanctuary (4/18/04)

Churches try to keep human touch with new media (4/11/04)

Christians see Passion as ministry opportunity (3/28/04)

Tutoring improves lives, opens doors for evangelism (3/21/04)

Cybertheft costly — especially for Christians (3/14/04)

A/G women seize new ministry opportunities (2/29/04)

Investment in early spiritual maturity reaps rewards (2/22/04)

Christian families respond to foster care opportunities (2/15/04)

Childless couples grapple with emotional roller coaster, faith challenges (2/8/04)

Few men seek help from abortion grief, guilt (1/18/04)

Women who answer God's call provide valuable local ministries (1/11/04)

2003 PE Report stories

Frontline Reports

2002 PE Report stories

2001 News Digest stories

2000 News Digest stories

Couple embarks on capitol prayer tour

By John W. Kennedy (8/29/04)

Few people nearing retirement age are eager to accept a yearlong venture fraught with unknown challenges, spiritual and otherwise.

J. Phillip Epperson, who turns 65 next month, is an exception.

Epperson and his wife of 38 years, Vicki, will begin a one-year prayer odyssey on September 11 in Springfield, Ill., that will take them to the steps of every state capitol in the country.

The couple will conclude their journey September 11, 2005, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington. In between they will be praying from 1-2 p.m. every Thursday afternoon, except for Thanksgiving and Christmas week — from Augusta, Maine, to Honolulu, Hawaii, from Tallahassee, Fla., to Juneau, Alaska.

The Eppersons’ Prayer Across America campaign ( is no lark. Epperson, who served as senior pastor of the Stone Church in Palos Heights, Ill., for two decades, says the Holy Spirit stirred him to undertake the prayer campaign before the terrorist attacks of 2001.

“God is America’s only protection,” says Epperson, who is now president of Helping Neighbors Worldwide Ministries based in Oak Forest, Ill. “The only way He will do that is through the church. The only way the church can do it is through prayer and the Word. Prayer stirs up a reverence for God, a holy fear of God and a sense of who God is.”

The Eppersons will take the 17,000-mile expedition in a recreational vehicle, hoping Christians will meet them at the capitols of their states. Each week, the hour will kick off with a blend of patriotic and Christian songs, followed by prayers of thanksgiving to God for blessings, repenting for sins, a call to return to the Lord, plus prayers for wisdom for national leaders and awakening in the church.

“The spirit of prayer is the first to leave the church,” Epperson says. “Those who try hard to pursue God keep the spirit of prayer alive.”

Epperson is obtaining state permits to make sure officials aren’t caught off guard in case crowds are large. In Illinois, for instance, four churches have committed to sending a busload of congregants.

“But numbers aren’t what’s most important to us,” Epperson says. “Even if it’s just my wife and me, we will pray the prayers God has given to us.”

Various individuals, congregations and parachurch ministries are helping the Eppersons meet their $125,000 budget. Springfield, Mo.-based evangelist Owen C. Carr, who has known Epperson for a quarter century, is a vocal supporter.

“When Phillip Epperson talks about calling people to prayer he leads by example,” Carr says. “I pray for God’s blessing upon him in this adventure of faith as he calls our nation to prayer one state at a time.”

E-mail this page to a friend.
©1999-2009 General Council of the Assemblies of God