Thy Kingdom Come Zoom Prayer Room is a Hit
The Reverend James Grier is a happy man. The Diocese of Exeter’s Mission Enabler had been worried that running a continuous 10-day, 24 hours a day prayer room on Zoom would be hard to get people to sign up to and he would end up doing the lonely overnight slots on his own.
But in the end, the prayer room, which was part of the international Thy Kingdom Come prayer initiative, exceeded expectations.
Over 500 people from across Devon and spanning a range of different church traditions took part in one or more of the hour-long sessions.
James said: “A virtual prayer room for the duration of Thy Kingdom Come felt like an attempt to make the best of a difficult situation, but in practice, it exceeded all our expectations.
“So many have commented on how powerful they found their times of prayer.
“In order to make the technology work, I had to have a laptop logged into Zoom for the whole time.
Constant prayer day and night
“It sat on the edge of my desk and although I couldn’t see what people were doing, I found it incredibly profound and moving to have that visual representation of people in constant prayer day and night.
“It is something that will stay with me for a long time.”
Thy Kingdom Come is a global prayer movement that invites Christians around the world to pray from Ascension (21 May) to Pentecost (31 May) for more people to come to know Jesus.
Some churches signed-up to pray for a whole night, or a block during the day. The first hour was led by Bishop Robert, Bishop Nick and Bishop Jackie.
Most of the daytime slots had more than one person and some had as many as 20 people praying together.
Those who took part were very positive about their experiences praying with others online.
One participant said: “The two sessions I attended were both extremely helpful and worthwhile, and what I experienced and learnt will, I hope, become incorporated into my daily prayer life.”
Another said they felt: “A sense of God building his kingdom with people not with buildings and institutions”
Another said: “It really encouraged conversations about prayer amongst our community that otherwise may not have happened as naturally or at a time of separation.”
James Grier said: “It certainly seemed to be a means for people to grow in prayer and one church is even starting a monthly zoom prayer meeting off the back of it.”
The whole diocese
Many participants shared how they valued being part of something that involved the whole Diocese, and there is a consensus that those who took part would like to do it again next year.
James hopes to find a way to hold an online prayer room next year in conjunction with physical prayer gatherings as well.
If you would like to see how other Christians took part in Thy Kingdom Come this year, you can watch this highlights video: