Churches unite with the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Pentecost prayer initiative
Monday 19th September 2016Churches across England and around the Anglican Communion are uniting around the second year of Thy Kingdom Come, the call by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York for Christians to pray in the run-up to Pentecost for more people to know Jesus Christ.
The Presidents of Churches Together in England (CTE) announced today that they have taken up the invitation for churches to pray intensively and intentionally for evangelism in the 10 days before Pentecost 2017.
Meanwhile, Archbishop Justin Welby has extended the call globally by inviting every province of the Anglican Communion to join in the period of prayer for more people to know the love of Jesus Christ.
Following the launch of Thy Kingdom Come in 2016, which an estimated hundred thousand-plus Christians joining in prayer across England and beyond, next year it will take place from 25th May to 4th June 2017.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said:
“It was profoundly moving to see over a hundred thousand people around England and beyond praying together during Thy Kingdom Come in the 10 days before Pentecost this year. As we look ahead to 2017 there is growing desire, as beautiful as it is remarkable, among people of so many denominations and nations to pray together for more people to know Jesus Christ.
“I pray that Christians everywhere say yes to this movement of the Spirit, and come together as one in prayer. This is about asking God to fill us with fresh joy and confidence to be the witnesses to Jesus Christ that we are called to be – as individuals and as churches – so that we may share His life-transforming love with those around us.”
In a statement today the CTE Presidents said: “We want to encourage our brothers and sisters in churches of all traditions to partner in praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ in the days leading up to Pentecost 2017. There is no prescription about how we should pray; we hope each church will participate in a way that is authentic to them and where possible to engage in this with their partner churches in their area.”
The CTE Presidents will be writing to their churches and congregations to encourage them to share this aim and to take part in this movement.
“We pray to the Father that his family, called to be one in Jesus Christ, may see the outpouring of the Holy Spirit to transform many lives and communities in our land,” they said.
Churches Together in England is represented by Presidents from the major traditions of member churches. The current presidents are:
Archbishop Justin Welby
The Archbishop of Canterbury
Cardinal Vincent Nichols
The Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster
The Revd Dr Hugh Osgood
The Free Churches Moderator
The Revd Canon Billy Kennedy
The President nominated by the New Churches, the Religious Society of Friends (i.e. the Quakers) and the Lutheran and German-speaking Churches
HE Archbishop Gregorios of Thyateira and Great Britain
The President for the Orthodox Churches
Bishop Dr Eric Brown
The Pentecostal President
Early ecumenical commitment to take part in Thy Kingdom Come 2017 includes:
- The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales has committed to playing a full part.
- The Free Churches Group is actively encouraging all its member churches to get involved.
- Many of the Pentecostal churches and new churches will be participating, and several of the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox churches in the UK have signalled their support.
- Provinces across the Anglican Communion have been invited to join the wave of prayer, and the World Methodist Council is encouraging all Methodists to warmly receive and actively participate in it.
- The hope is to see ‘beacon’ worship events in many capital cities in Europe.
Read the statement from the Presidents of Churches Together in England:
STATEMENT OF THE PRESIDENTS OF CHURCHES TOGETHER IN ENGLAND
‘Thy Kingdom Come – Praying Together at Pentecost 2017’
Jesus invites all his followers to pray in His name to the Father confidently and expectantly. In the power of the Holy Spirit we pray together as one family. All Christians share this gift of the Lord’s Prayer. When we pray ‘Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done’ we long for Christ’s transforming love to bring hope and joy to all.
Earlier this year many of the churches in England took up the invitation of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York to set aside the days leading up to Pentecost Sunday to pray for the renewing and empowering presence of the Holy Spirit to make Christ real in our midst, for the flourishing of all. As Presidents of Churches Together in England we are delighted to join together to extend this invitation to all the churches in England to participate in this movement of prayer in 2017.
We want to encourage our brothers and sisters in churches of all traditions to partner in praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ in the days leading up to Pentecost, from 25 May - 4 June, 2017. There is no prescription about how we should pray; we hope each church will participate in a way that is authentic to them and where possible to engage in this with their partner churches in their area.
The aim is simple and threefold:
- To join with the whole family of God the Father
- To pray for the empowering of God the Holy Spirit
- That we may be effective witnesses to God the Son Jesus Christ
As Presidents, we will be writing to our churches and congregations to encourage them to share this aim and to take part in this movement. We pray to the Father that his family, called to be one in Jesus Christ, may see the outpouring of the Holy Spirit to transform many lives and communities in our land.
Visit the Thy Kingdom Come 2017 website: www.thykingdomcome.global