By Erick Johnson
From a distance it looks like a mom and pop car wash operation with people holding up signs and waving their arms to get drivers attention. But it’s a prayer drive thru in a parking lot at the Parkway Gardens Christian Church in Woodlawn. All you need to do is pull up in the parking lot, leave your car, bow your head, and cast all your burdens on the Man upstairs to biggie size your faith and your spirituality.
This creative outreach has been going on now for four years outside the Parkway Gardens Christian Church, located at 6600 S. Martin Luther King Drive. At 6 p.m. every Wednesday in the thick of rush hour traffic, faithful members of this church bring out the drive thru signs, hold them high on the sidewalk and reel in someone who’s in need of spiritual help. If guests don’t have a car, they can simply walk in and get a prayer. The prayers go on for several hours until dusk.
Members say the prayer drive thru brings in between 20 to 30 people every session. During a visit by a Crusader reporter, a young man was overcome with emotion after praying. For guests, the prayer drive thru can be a healing experience where they leave clean and refreshed.
Before they join the group in prayer, drivers or walk-in guests fill out a card indicating what issues, problems or areas of their life they need in prayer. At the close of the prayer, they are given a prescription bottles filled with bible scriptures written on strips of paper folded into little squares. It might be described as a prescription for healing.
Rosemary Coleman, one of the prayer warriors, says she gets people from all walks of life.
“People who are driving and going to whatever their destination is stop and come through. We pray for them. We get a lot of responses. I love it because I know what God can do. I know what prayer can do,” Coleman said.