BBC Songs of Praise shows CTE Presidents in prayer
BBC’s Songs of Praise has shown CTE’s Presidents kneeling together in unity to pray for our nation.
The programme, broadcast on Sunday 4th August 2019
, features highlights from the Thy Kingdom Come prayer gathering in Trafalgar Square, where CTE’s Presidents joined 8,000 Christians from many denominations to pray and worship together in the heart of our capital.
Churches across England took part in Thy Kingdom Come
prayer gatherings and activities between Ascension and Pentecost, praying together for more people to come to know Jesus Christ. In 2018, churches from over 65 denominations in 114 countries took part in the 10 days of prayer, including Anglicans and Roman Catholics, Orthodox and Methodists. And even more joined in 2019.
On BBC’s Songs of Praise, Archbishop Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury and one of CTE President’s, shared the heart behind Thy Kingdom Come: “We can do nothing as Christians without a foundation of prayer. And it’s not just prayer in the sense of revival, it’s prayer allowing God to show us what God wants.
“And so we’re transformed by prayer to take part in the life of the church in the way that God wants us to.”
Celebrating the sight of so many Christians from different denominations praying and worshipping together, Archbishop Welby added: “This is the real deal isn’t it. I mean we’ve got I don’t know how many denominations here this afternoon, and who cares where they come from? What matters is that they know and serve and follow Jesus Christ.”
Archbishop Welby also encouraged Christians across the nation to Pray for five
. “Think of five people who you know and love, and pray for them to find the reality of Jesus Christ in their own lives. Praying for everything about those people, but especially that they will know the love of Jesus Christ.”
Archbishop Angaelos of the Coptic Orthodox Church, CTE’s Orthodox President, also took part in the event, where the Coptic Orthodox Church hosted a stand to engage with the thousands there. He also shared his joy to be part of such a gathering: “To have this kind of presence in the middle of London with all of the diversity of churches here is just breath-taking, it’s wonderful.”
Celebrating the unity displayed through Thy Kingdom Come, and the role of CTE’s Presidents in representing the church’s unity, CTE’s General Secretary Dr Paul Goodliff says: “Thy Kingdom Come has grown into a thoroughly ecumenical event each year between Ascension Day and Pentecost. As for those first disciples, it is a season of prayer and waiting, and this year it culminated in a nation-wide celebration with the London event in Trafalgar Square at its heart, supported by beacon events throughout the country.
“The presence of our 49 member churches was represented by our Presidents, who gathered to lead the people in the Square in prayer together, with the focus upon our nation. Our Presidents Archbishop Justin Welby (the Archbishop of Canterbury), Cardinal Vincent Nichols (the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster), Rev Dr Hugh Osgood (Free Church Moderator), Archbishop Angaelos (of the Coptic Orthodox Church) and Pastor Agu Irukwu (the Pentecostal President from the Redeemed Christian Church of God) reflect the diversity of churches in Churches Together in England.
“As CTE Presidents, together they serve as our ‘public face’ – a collegial and representative embodiment of the churches throughout England. Their personal fellowship and friendship also reflect the bonds of unity that CTE member churches receive, both as a gift of grace and a task that demands every effort in maintaining that unity. Prayer for one another must lie at the heart of that work, and it is absolutely right to see that wonderfully reflected in the joint prayer of our Presidents, whom we uphold in prayer for wisdom and ever-deepening fellowship.”
Ben Aldous, CTE’s new Principal Officer for Evangelism and Mission, shared his feelings after being at the prayer event: "It was so wonderful to be a part of the Thy Kingdom Come celebrations at Trafalgar Square. I was particularly struck by the way in which the whole church in all its diversity was represented on stage, in the stalls about the square and in the rainbow of people gathered to pray and worship. Truly Churches together!"
Visit www.thykingdomcome.global to find out more about Thy Kingdom Come and how to get involved.
Photo credit: Rodycloud Photography