In the wake of the George Zimmerman trial, some Central Floridians prayed on Sunday, though others questioned if more tangible action would be more appropriate.
On Thursday, Gov. Rick Scott had called on Floridians to use the day to reflect.
In a statement, Scott declared Sunday a statewide day of prayer for unity. The proclamation asked communities across Florida to band together and pray for the Trayvon Martin and Zimmerman families.
- Zimmerman Trial Photo Galleries
- Interactive Timeline: Key events in the Trayvon Martin-George Zimmerman case
- Pictures: Key players in the case against George Zimmerman
- Pictures: George Zimmerman's many faces
- Pictures: Trayvon Martin through the years
- Pictures: George Zimmerman released on bail
See more photos »
- Executive Branch
See more topics »
"Tragic events compel us to a time of deep reflection and prayer to find strength and peace in uncertainty," the proclamation read. "And whereas, Floridians are unified in not only their resilience, but also in being a people of great humility, kindness, and compassion."
At the Family Worship Center in Sanford, Pastor Jeff Krall took time out of his sermon to read the governor's proclamation and lead his congregation in prayer.
"It's very encouraging when civic leaders acknowledge the need for prayer," he said.
Some churchgoers said they believed Scott's proclamation was necessary for the community.
"There are people out there that need to come to grips with it," said Aida Morales, 66, a parishoner of Family Worship Center. "We have to accept the verdict; we don't have to like it."
Pastor David Uth at First Baptist Church of Orlando prayed that Central Florida would not be known by its controversial trial outcomes but by how Central Floridians praise God.
"I think loving one another in this time is a great demonstration of the power of the Gospel," Uth said after his sermon.
Uth said he thought the governor's proclamation was an appropriate response to the trial.
"Learning from these moments and reflection help us feel better," he said. "I wouldn't have him call to do anything else than let the system work."
But some religious leaders said they thought that prayer wasn't enough.
"He could've come up with something a little more encouraging than a day of prayer?" said the Rev. Harry Rucker at First Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church in Sanford.
Rucker said he wasn't planning on participating in the statewide day of prayer because he thought that Scott didn't address the protestors' requests for discussion of the "stand your ground" law.
"We've got a human problem and we're throwing it to the Lord," he said. "They didn't go to the Lord when they came up with this crazy law."
firstname.lastname@example.org or 407-420-5433