Thy Kingdom Come in Leicestershire
Christians across the Diocese of Leicester joined with Christians around the world in a commitment to pray for 24 hours a day during the 10 days of Thy Kingdom Come.
The global wave of prayer took place between the days of Ascension and Pentecost, and gave life to new and innovative ways to pray collectively during the Covid-19 pandemic.
In Market Harborough, Christians of all denominations took part in a 24/10 ‘virtual’ prayer room, with an overwhelming number of people signing up to pray in hourly slots throughout the day and night during Thy Kingdom Come.
Among a number of online events, a webpage of resources to guide and encourage prayer, and regular, collective prayer over video chat, there was also a prayer wall to write on and a Facebook Page to post to.
“When I first suggested holding a virtual prayer room for 10 days I said that we needed ‘audacious faith,’ explains Reverend Alison Iliffe, Team Vicar of the Parish of the Transfiguration, St Nicholas and St Hugh.
“We have seen that faith at work as people have taken up the challenge to pray in so many different ways over the last ten days.
“I think the willingness of people to pray and join in is a sign of God at work in these times, and we continue to pray for Thy Kingdom to Come in our land.”
Louise Brown is a member of Market Harborough Baptist Church and was part of the TKC planning team. She has a deep passion for prayer and for encouraging others - young and old - to learn to pray in new and creative ways.
She says: “Creating a virtual prayer space was new to me, and my priority was for it to be as much like a physical prayer space as possible – maintaining that sense of shared space, of creativity, of journeying together as we collectively discern God’s heart.
“One of the wonderful things about a prayer room is seeing the space fill with prayers, pictures, verses, and words from the Lord as the days and nights go by, and so it was a joy to see this online virtual prayer space fill up as people shared their times with the Lord.
“It was also a real blessing to see people go deeper in their relationship with God and share how they had encountered the Lord in their hour of prayer.
“One of the most special and precious things was the sense of unity between the different churches and streams of the faith in Harborough, especially at a time when we are following social distance rules and having to physically stay apart from each other. I hope for many more opportunities to plan prayer events such as this as part of Churches Together in Harborough.”
Young people from various churches across Oadby and Evington also came together during Thy Kingdom Come to pray to see more of God's kingdom, love and likeness in the world.
Members of the ‘Oadby Youth Project’ made prayer videos and chose topics to lead on that they were particularly passionate about, some of which they don't see or hear the Church praying about very often.
These included prayers for mental health, confidence in crisis, loneliness, schools, young people and deprivation, the world, equality and poverty. The videos were shared on social media among their group, the Diocese of Leicester and wider during the 10 days, and have made quite an impact.
Lou McGoldrick, Youth Worker at St Paul's Church in Oadby, says: “We have noticed lots of young people engaging and sharing the videos and we've had messages about how helpful they have found it seeing other young people lead them in prayer."
“They have also reached those who wouldn't usually come to a church-based group but who, in these times, have shown an interest and curiosity about faith.
“We have been reminded of the power and prophetic message young people can bring not just to their peers, but to the church as a whole.”
The organisers of the initiative, Thy Kingdom Come, have also been in contact with Oadby Youth Project to use clips from their videos, because they see the value in being led in prayer by young people.
Lou says: “I'm very proud of what the young people have done and everything that is powerful and inspiring about this project is down to them.”
You can see more of what they did in Harborough, and for links to the Oadby Youth Project prayer videos, see here.
This article was originally posted on the website of the Diocese of Leicester.