Myrtle Beach Bike Rallies

Prayer warriors plan to keep vigil through Bikefest

jblackmon@thesunnews.com

Prayer warriors were out in force during the Atlantic Beach Bikefest on Friday night, planning to keep praying for an “envelope of God and Jesus in the area” for 80 hours – tropical storm or not.

“We’re here to pray for the whole area … (for) a little envelope of love out here,” said Rand Avery of Christ United Methodist Church. The prayers seemed to be helping.

“I have a friend, she lives on the south side and she says it’s so much quieter this year than it has been in the past,” he said. His friend was praying, too, for the incidents she heard relayed on a scanner at home.

Kel Steiner of Youth With A Mission said they don’t come out just for Bikefest. Every Saturday Christians from various denominations hold a Revive Myrtle Beach where teams head out to public places throughout the city, praying for people they meet.

Every Friday they hold a prayer walk up and down Ocean Boulevard “where we’re praying for the city and praying for the businesses and praying for God’s blessing to come on our city. We want to see changes happen here that are healthy and honorable and good,” Steiner said. “We have a lot of things that we’re praying about and we pray consistently.”

Youth With A Mission has about a dozen churches and even more organizations up and down the Grand Strand involved in prayer missions this year.

Steiner said they planned to stay and pray around the clock until late Sunday afternoon.

“Lord willing, the rain will stay away,” he said. “We haven’t come up with any alternative arrangements at this point. We just end up wanting to anticipate that God can steer that storm elsewhere.”

A tropical depression churning into what forecasters have said may become Tropical Storm Bonnie was barreling toward the South Carolina coast off of the Bahamas Friday. Bonnie is predicted to bring downpours and increasing breezes over the Memorial Day weekend.

Myrtle Beach City Councilman Randal Wallace said that the city was hit with a Bonnie before that lashed the Carolina coast with high winds and torrential rain.

The category 2 hurricane that hit the North Carolina coast in August of 1998 inspired more than half-a-million people to evacuate from homes along the seaboard as warnings were issued from Murrells Inlet to the Chesapeake Bay of Virginia, according to a story by the L.A. Times.

Many are praying this Bonnie will be more of a bonnie lass and turn away.

Thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts, vendors, fans and more cruised into Atlantic Beach on Friday to kick off the annual Bikefest. The three-day event runs through Memorial Day.

Emily Weaver: 843-444-1722, @TSNEmily

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