Congregation hopes power of prayer will keep Dorian away

Group also gathered in 2017 as Hurricane Irma hit Florida

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Using the power of prayer, a congregation gathered Thursday evening at the Jacksonville Beach Pier to keep Dorian away from Jacksonville, and tell the storm to "calm down."

"We're coming out here as group of believers like we did 2 years ago for Hurricane Irma," Mary Paker said. "We came and got in a circle and prayed and we sang."

News4Jax was there in 2017 when the group gathered at the same time, in the same place as it did on Thursday night. The prayer service was complete with hymns and Bible passages.

"We felt like we (made) a difference," Parker said. "We were overcome by social media response and what others do in their own town and beaches."

Meteorologists are pretty sure Hurricane Dorian will be a major storm when it hits Florida around Labor Day, but they don't yet know exactly where it will strike.