Something Spiritual Happens Here - Issue #75
Every Sunday morning at about eight o'clock, a small group of leaders gathers to pray at Chapel Hill United Methodist Church in Mansfield, Ohio. The team spends several minutes sharing joys and concerns and then begins prayers. They pray at every pew in the sanctuary, as they remember the needs in the congregation and the community. Then the team lifts up specific ministries of the congregation. They discuss possible ministry opportunities and decisions that need to be made, and they pray for guidance. After about 45 minutes to an hour, the team concludes with the Lord's Prayer.
The Rev. Beverly Hall, the pastor, says that this intentional time of prayer has helped the team grow spiritually. The team members are more confident in praying aloud and look forward to these "conversations with God." She believes that these prayers help guide the leadership in decision making and create an awareness of need. The team responds to needs that have been identified in the prayer time. For example, the church provided support for two families in the community at Christmas. The Rev. Hall says, "The church senses there is something different; something spiritual is happening to us."
Some Questions for Discussion
How does your leadership team model the importance of prayer to the congregation?
In what ways does the congregational prayer life guide the decision-making process of your congregation?
What opportunities are provided for congregational leaders to pray aloud in worship and other ministry settings? What additional training and experiences do leaders in your congregation need to help them be more effective as prayer leaders?
Carol Krau is the Director of Adult Formation and Discipleship at theDiscipleship Ministries. She can be reached at [email protected]. To learn more about the Discipleship Ministries Prayer Initiative go to http://tinyurl.com/gbodprayer