Pennsylvania’s capitol city is going through some hard times. Like many cities across the country, Harrisburg has found itself cutting programs left and right to deal with its rising debt. But now, the city has sunk so far in debt that many feel there is nothing else to be done.

Nothing, that is- but pray.

This week, Harrisburg’s Mayor Linda Thompson announced that she will be participating in three days of fasting and prayer in the hopes of encouraging cooperation between the different arms of the city government. After attempting to trim the budget down through layoffs and various program cuts, the city may have to file for bankruptcy.

Critics have argued that Mayor Thompson is taking her religious convictions too far, but she says she is merely acting on her faith, saying, “I am open about my faith and will be participating in the voluntary prayer and fast.”

Thompson will be joining in the fast and prayers with several religious leaders from several denominations. Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders from Harrisburg plan to begin midnight on June 21 and continue until June 24.

According to Reuters, the situation in Harrisburg could use all the prayers the city can get:

On Monday, a team of state-appointed advisors recommended the city sell a deeply indebted incinerator at the root of its fiscal problems, renegotiate its labor agreements, cut jobs, sell other assets and assume $26 million in new borrowing.

The city council has until July 23 to adopt the plan.

What do you think of Harrisburg’s mayor participating in the fast and prayer for the city’s financial troubles? Share your thoughts Clutchettes and gents- tell us what you think!

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  • Tomi-chan

    Not sure if I sent my post or just forgot… but wow. There is definitely a problem when you merge religion and state. She should just do her damn job. Also, isn’t there something in the bible against fasting for acknowledgment? It should be done in private.

    Sometimes people really surprise me with their selfishness.

    • It’s not as if she is saying she will do nothing but fast and pray on the issues. She IS doing her job, along with leaning on her faith for support. I don’t see how that is selfish at all. She’s sacrificing her comfort-ability for the people she was elected to help.

    • Tomi-chan

      How about the fact that there may be people in Harrisburg that don’t support religion or that religion? Mentioning her faith as a solution for Harrisburg’s plight is offensive. It’s your job as mayor is to keep in mind that not all people see her god as the end all be all. As a representative of a community you must at least appear to be impartial in areas concerning religion. A private fast, (something that is mentioned as imperative, to paraphrase the Bible*), is a way she could still lean on her faith and help her people.

      With all that said… we do have the dear Grand Old Party spitting on that rule every day.

      [* When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men they are fasting. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. – Matthew 6:16 ]

  • Marshel1969

    I thinks she is not bothering anyone but the God that she serves. She has a right to here faith! And lets be honesty she truly knows how bad it is! Peace and blessing to you Mayor!