Utah faith leaders celebrate National Day of Prayer

May 6, 2021, 5:21 PM

Utah faith leaders unite in prayer...

Photo: Carmelite nuns at prayer. (Courtesy of

(Courtesy of

SALT LAKE CITY — Faith leaders of different traditions in Utah may disagree on many aspects of religion, but they agree on the power of prayer. 

Utah faith leaders unite in prayer

The National Day of Prayer, which is observed on the first Thursday in May each year, was founded in 1952 by Congress and President Harry Truman.

Rev. Oscar Moses of Calvary Baptist Church in Salt Lake City, Imam Shuaib of the Utah Islamic Center and Elder Evan Schmutz, a General Authority Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints joined Inside Sources host Boyd Matheson to talk the power of prayer.

Rev. Oscar Moses: “Every day should be a day of prayer”

Utah faith leaders uniformly point to the power of prayer. 

“Let’s start with you, Reverend Moses. It’s been a tumultuous year to be sure. And, as you look at this National Day of Prayer, lots of events of all denominations coming together . . . what’s in your heart today as you look at where we are aware and where we need to go next?” Boyd asked.

“Every day should be a day of prayer. This year has been a tremendous learning experience for many of us. One of the things that I tried to implement at Calvary, as a place of prayer is that we pray specifically for spiritual healing, for physical healing, as well as racial healing,” Rev. Moses said.

Imam Shuaib: “We pray for all” 

“Imam Shuaib, we know it is the middle of Ramadan for you. Tell us about how prayer, especially during this Ramadan season, has been important and different for our friends in the Muslim community,” Boyd said.

“Probably everyone knows someone in their immediate family circle or circle of friends who have been infected with COVID. So there’s a lot of prayers almost on a daily basis for people whose loved ones are sick. So we pray for all of the believers, non-believers, fellow human beings, whether they are in America or Argentina or India or Iraq, anywhere in the world, that may God grant them cure and speedy recovery, and also those who have passed away from this virus may God grant them paradise,” Imam Shuaib said.

“I’m sure as you look at your congregation, and again some of that heaviness from some of the loss, loss of lives and loved ones, and opportunities and so on. What’s the hope in your community, especially as you go through this beautiful, powerful period of Ramadan?” Boyd asked.

“Ramadan is a transformative month for the Muslim community, but I think as the larger community as a whole, the pandemic should transform us in the sense that it’s not just back to business as usual,”  Imam Shuaib said. “We should become more connected, more spiritual and realize how dependent we are on the Almighty for every inhale and exhale. How much we are dependent on each other and how we all have the same hopes and fears. We should become more united coming out of this pandemic as one community as one country.”

Elder Evan Schmutz: “We pray together”

“This National Day of Prayer began in 1952,” said Elder Schmutz. “Our nation and the world has changed much since that time. Prayer is needed more, and fewer prayers are being offered, and we have great appreciation for those of every faith, who pray to a god.”

“I don’t think there’s ever been a point in the nation’s history where prayers have been more needed, and I think you’re right. Sadly, it’s probably a time in our history where fewer prayers are being offered,” Boyd said. “What are we doing in faith communities, and in our communities at large, to promote this idea that we can humbly come together, that we can petition a god in heaven, a higher power depending on the faith tradition, how do we go about?”

“I think we can invite people to pray at home or pray with those that are close to them, that they love, whether they’re family members or other close loved ones. And then attend church,” said Elder Schmutz. “I think many churches are still virtual, but as we gather together in church, we pray together and we uplift one another. So I think the home and the church are two wonderful places to start that. We invite everyone on a daily basis to individually bow their head and speak to God, to our Father in heaven.”

Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson can be heard weekdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Inside Sources

Christmas tip...

Curt Gresseth

If you tip more during Christmas, are you feeling generous or pressured?

Most American say they will tip more, or the same amount as last year, during this Christmas season.

21 hours ago

governor cox and several other people speak about his plan to address homelessness in utah...

Aimee Cobabe and Hugo Rikard-Bell

Gov. Cox releases budget plan to improve homelessness resources in Utah

Gov. Spencer Cox's office said Utah has gaps in how it addresses homelessness. His plans will attempt to close those gaps.

2 days ago

Two street signs pointing in opposite directions. One reads "censorship" and the other reads "free ...

Mariah Maynes

The role university leaders play in promoting free speech

University leadership plays a valuable role in promoting free speech on college campuses. By modeling discourse and promoting factual information, they can encourage students to do the same.

9 days ago

President M. Russell Ballard might have been losing his vision himself, but he never stopped inviti...

Boyd Matheson

Boyd Matheson: President M. Russell Ballard inviting all to “come and see!”

President M. Russell Ballard spent his life inviting people to "come and see."

20 days ago

BEIJING, CHINA - DECEMBER 04: Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) shake hands with U.S Vice President ...

Mariah Maynes

Biden-Jinping meeting: what’s on the agenda?

A long awaited meeting between President Biden and China's president, Xi Jinping will occur on Wednesday in San Francisco, California.

22 days ago

The U.S Supreme Court building....

Kristine Weller

Separation of powers: How the Supreme Court will weigh in

The Supreme Court will be considering a variety of cases that have the potential to reign in federal bureaucracy.

22 days ago

Sponsored Articles

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Human hand holding a protest banner stop vaping message over a crowded street background....

Prosperous Utah Communities

Utah’s Battle to Protect Youth from Vaping Epidemic Faces New Threat as Proposed Rule Threatens Progress

Utah's strict standards of nicotine levels in vaping products are at risk, increasing health hazards associated with use. Read more about how you can advocate for a better future for Utah's youth.

Aerial photo of Bear Lake shoreline with canopies and people camped out on the beach...

Visit Bear Lake

Last-Minute Summer Vacation Planning? Check Out Bear Lake!

Bear Lake is the perfect getaway if you are last-minute summer vacation planning. Enjoy activities with your whole family at this iconic lake.

Utah faith leaders celebrate National Day of Prayer