Photo Credit: Ben Jones / Missional Generation
[ACNS, by Staff Writer] The global ecumenical prayer movement Thy Kingdom Come, which started life as a simple request from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York to the clergy of the Church of England, will this year take place in more than 90 per cent of countries around the world. The international launch of this year’s event – which runs from Pentecost to Ascension (21 to 31 May 2020) took place last week at Lambeth Palace, the official residence of the Archbishop of Canterbury in London, England.
Church leaders and representatives from a number of denominations and para church organisations gathered at the palace for the launch, which took place exactly four years to the day since the first launch. The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby was joined by a number of church leaders, including Pete Greig from the 24-7 Prayer movement, Bishop Nicholas Hudson from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Westminster, and Teresa Carvalho from the Catholic Bishops Conference of England and Wales. The event was streamed live on Facebook and watched by Christians from around the world.
Archbishop Justin told those present: “what excites me is that as we come together and pray for people to be filled with the Spirit, so they come to know and love Jesus Christ, to repent of their sins and turn away from all that is wrong and to find the love of Christ filling their hearts, we are in fact praying for the changing of our world.”
Pete Greig acknowledged the busyness of his “fellow pastors, vicars and priests”, but urged them to make the Thy Kingdom Come initiative a priority. “Let us get behind this and let us have grace for one another in this because I believe Jesus is calling us to pray,” he said. “This has the marks of the Holy Spirit upon it.”
Thy Kingdom Come first emerged from the Archbishops’ Evangelism Task Group. “We wanted to see a culture change in the Church in this country on evangelism”, the Archbishop’s evangelism advisor Canon Chris Russell said. “We never thought it would grow this much over four years. God has done more than we can ask or imagine. . . We pray God will renew us, his church and that God would work in the lives of our families, neighbours and friends and open their hearts, hands, ears to receive Him In their lives.”
A new smartphone app with gaming and augmented reality technology has been created for this year’s Thy Kingdom Come initiative. During the 11-day prayer focus, the app will provide will provide a game, Bible story or video reflection. The resources will be available from the Thy Kingdom Come website.