God Blessed America

This time gives America an opportunity for renewal. If you know how to pray, pray.

In 1746 the fledgling colony of Massachusetts was threatened by a French invasion force never seen in this hemisphere. Ninety six French vessels were assembled off the coast of New England, prepared to attack Boston. The armada consisted of forty well armed war ships and fifty-six troop transports. Their mission was to destroy all coastal cities from Massachusetts to Georgia. 

Aboard  the transports were 13,000 soldiers awaiting their assignment to go ashore after the ensuing bombardment and burn what remained. 

Governor William Shirley issued a proclamation calling on the people to pray.

It was a bright sunny day, October 16, when hundreds made their way to the Old South Church to pray. 

Reverend Thomas Prince ascended the high pulpit and began an impassioned fervent prayer. “Deliver us from our enemy,” he entreated. “Send Thy tempest, Lord, upon the waters to the eastward.”

His booming voice resonated through the building as he continued to pray. “Rise Thy right hand. Scatter the ships of our tormentors and drive them hence.”

The people enjoined the plea for divine aid asking not only that they be protected, but that the French oppressor should be destroyed.  Suddenly the bright sunlight that illuminated the church faded.  A wind of such force rattled the windows. Pounding rain on the roof reverberated in the church. 

Prince continued undisturbed to pray, “Sink their proud frigates beneath the power of Thy winds,” he cried out.

Eerily the church bell moved by the wind tolled twice prompting Prince to pray: “We hear Thy voice, O Lord! We hear it! Thy breath is upon the waters to the eastward, even upon the deep. The bell tolls the death of our enemies!”

As the storm abated Governor Shirles sent the sloop, “The Rising Son” to obtain news of the French fleet.

The captain reported nearly the entire fleet was destroyed. Distraught by what had happened to their mighty fleet, the Admiral and Vic Admiral committed suicide. Of the 13,000 soldiers only 1,000 had survived. The badly crippled fleet set sail for France.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow penned his famous poem “Paul Revere’s Ride” also wrote of this miraculous event in his poem, “The Ballad of the French Fleet.”

This is but one of several instances we as a nation have been blessed by God. Pray for the next.