(Photo by Tim Jaynes, Staff)
SIKESTON -- In 2001, following the events of Sept. 11, Sandy Bloemer of Sikeston sat down and began writing a song focusing on prayer for the nation. She didn't finish it then.
Instead, she filed it away under her piano bench.
A little over a year passed, and soon the war with Iraq started. After watching war coverage on the news, Bloemer decided she was ready to finish her song.
"One Sunday morning I was watching news clips of Iraq POWs and got the song back out," Bloemer recalled. "And within 10 minutes, God had given me the new song."
The patriotic song, "Prayer List," is about prayer for America and how U.S. citizens can come together and pray for the nation and its leaders, Bloemer explained. Over the past couple months, the song has garnered national attention, including reaching the hands of President George W. Bush.
"It's a song about praying for our country and our leaders," Bloemer said. "It's about praying that all of our troops are brought home safely to their families."
Bloemer said her producers in Nashville, Tenn., finished the song and sent it to the chaplains and other music producers. And ever since gospel music recording artist Linda Lanier of Montana-based Three Hills Music Group got wind of "Prayer List," the song is growing increasingly popular.
According to Lanier, the response to "Prayer List" is very positive. "People just love it," she said. "When you hear the song, it really gets to you -- and non-Christians like the song, too."
After finishing audio recording of "Prayer List," Lanier produced a concept video that features actual scenes from the war in Iraq. A U.S. military news service, "Hometown News," selected the "Prayer List" video over famous country musicians to send to over 1,200 military bases to be played on the Fourth of July, Bloemer said.
"It was my prayer to get 'Prayer List' to our soldiers to let them know we were praying for them," Bloemer said.
"Prayer List" has also been sent to TV evangelists like Jerry Falwell, John Hagy, Adrian Rogers, and it's in the active file for upcoming use by the "700 Club," Bloemer said.
This week alone the concept video was sent to 400 TV stations and has been featured on many local, nightly news stations, Bloemer said.
"In the video, flags and a cemetery are shown," Bloemer explained. "It also shows footage of our soldiers who were fighting in Iraq baptizing themselves. They had dug a hole and poured water over several guys who wanted to be baptized."
The song touches all people because almost every family has someone in the military or knows someone who has a family member is in the military, Bloemer pointed out.
Bloemer has been writing songs more than 25 years and has written 500 songs. She is married to Bill Bloemer, and they have two children together. Last year, Bloemer even started her own production company, Songpatch Music.
"We've won the war but not the peace," Bloemer said. "This song is about striving for peace, and it's already blessed many people."
U.S. Senator Conrad Burns of Montana hand delivered the song to President Bush three weeks ago, Bloemer noted.
"Prayer List" was also given to the chairman of the Council of the National Day of Prayer Committee in hopes of becoming the anthem for the National Day of Prayer.
"I think our leaders want the American people behind them in prayer," Bloemer said. "We as Christians -- that's our responsibility -- to hold them up."
Visit www.lindalanierministries.com for more information or to order copies of "Prayer List."