GONZALES, LA (WAFB) - Officials with the City of Gonzales gathered Tuesday with the mayor and a few dozen community members in the Gonzales Civic Center for the annual Mayor's Prayer Breakfast, a 29-year tradition.
Mayor Barney Arceneaux invited lots of opportunities for prayer. Father Jerry Martin with St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church led attendees in the morning's invocation.
The mayor chose the theme "Love One Another," the biblical commandment, in what may be an olive branch wave at the city council. Remember it was only last summer, the council approved the budget several months late.
Judge Guy Holdridge took the podium to invite the presentation of the colors by members of the City of Gonzales Police Department Honor Guard and the Pledge of Allegiance led by Leslie Jackson.
This year's guest speaker was Bishop Robert Muench with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge. In keeping with the event's theme, Bishop Muench called on everyone to think about how they are going about loving one another in simple day to day acts of kindness. Bishop Muench reminded all in attendance that actions shown from the heart, especially in times of strife, speak louder than words ever can.
Mayor Arceneaux offered emphasis on the bishop's points, speaking of how love should be a part of everyday life.
"Each of us has the ability to make a difference in another person's life," he said. "And the best part about it is that it doesn't cost us a penny to do it. It simply costs us time to take notice of those around us."
Arceneaux spoke of smiles being contagious and of how visits to the sick and elderly help to reinforce a person's faith. The mayor reminded people to take the time to truly listen to the needs of one another, and to say things when you mean them. He encouraged everyone to volunteer.
"Love and kindness are never wasted," said Mayor Arceneaux. "They truly do make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless the giver, you."
Reverend Chris Plant from First Calvary Missionary Baptist Church furnished the music and the packed Civic Center enjoyed the uplifting songs.
The Mayor's Prayer Breakfast is an annual event held each year on the first Tuesday in November. For more information on how you can take part next year, contact the City of Gonzales City Hall building by calling (225) 647-2841.