Archbishop Justin’s Priorities
- The renewal of prayer and the Religious Life
- Evangelism and witness
1. The renewal of prayer and the Religious Life
“If we want to see things changed, it starts with prayer. It starts with a new spirit of prayer, using all the traditions, ancient and modern. When it comes, it will be linked to what has gone before, but it will look different – because it is a new renewal for new times. God’s created community is perfectly designed for its time and place. It almost always comes from below. It comes from Christians seeking Christ.”
Prayer matters, and prayer changes things. History shows that a renewal of prayer can result not just in churches transformed, but whole societies too. Today, all over Europe, new communities of prayer are growing. By making the renewal of prayer the first priority of his ministry, Archbishop Justin hopes to encourage both existing and new religious communities in Britain.
- encouraging all Christians to deepen their relationship with Jesus Christ through prayer. Archbishop Justin hopes to help inspire Christians to explore the many different ways that prayer can bring them closer to God, enriching not just their own lives but the lives of those around them;
- supporting new and existing religious communities which are devoted to simple lives of work, study and prayer (this is sometimes called ‘the Religious Life’). In such Christian communities, which date back to at least the 5th Century, living by a shared ‘rule’ helps members support one another to reach to new depths of love and obedience in their lives of faith.
What does pray mean to you?
In what ways could you deepen your relationship with God through prayer?
If we wrote a shared rule for our community of faith what would you want to put in it?
Archbishops Call for ‘Great Wave of Prayer’ for Evangelism During Pentecost
The Archbishops of Canterbury and York are inviting churches to pray for the evangelisation of the nation during the week before Pentecost Sunday.
The Archbishops have written to every serving parish priest in the Church of England expressing their longing “to see a great wave of prayer across our land, throughout the Church of England and many other Churches” from 8th-15th May.
The week of prayer will culminate in ‘Beacon Events’ around the country over Pentecost weekend, where people will pray for the renewal of the Holy Spirit and the confidence to share their faith.
In their letter the Archbishops said:
“At the heart of our prayers will be words that Jesus himself taught us – ‘Thy kingdom come, thy will be done.’ It is impossible to overstate the life-transforming power of the Lord’s Prayer. It is a prayer that is reassuring enough to be on the lips of the dying and yet dangerous enough to be banned in cinemas. It is famous enough to be spoken each day by billions in hundreds of languages and yet intimate enough to draw us ever closer into friendship with Jesus Christ. It is simple enough to be memorised by small children and yet profound enough to sustain a whole lifetime of prayer. When we pray it with sincerity and with joy, there is no imagining the new ways in which God can use us to his glory.”
The Archbishops are suggesting various ways churches can engage with the week of prayer. These include holding a day or week of continuous ‘24/7’ prayer as parishes, teams or deaneries; saying special prayers in Sunday worship; prayer walking; or handing out a novena prayer card to every congregation member.
How do you feel about praying for renewal?
In what ways would you like to be involved?