Archbishops’ annual ecumenical prayer movement now in nearly 90% of countries worldwide

According to a new report released this week,  Christians in nearly 90% of countries worldwide have participated in a global prayer movement for evangelisation –  started by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York – just 4 years ago.

From Bangladesh to Brazil, Australia to Austria and South Africa to the Solomon Islands – Thy Kingdom Come has seen millions of Christians, across 65 different traditions and denominations, pray during the 11 days between Ascension and Pentecost.

This year, the prayer movement has been endorsed by a range of high-profile leaders, including His Holiness Pope Francis and Her Majesty The Queen who commended Thy Kingdom Come in a speech to the Church of Scotland.  

Similarly, for the first time this year, a special Pentecost celebration took place in the heart of London’s Trafalgar Square featuring worship from Matt Redman and the Kingdom Choir and contributions from all  5 presidents of Churches Together in England along with the Bishop of London Dame Sarah Mullally DBE and Rev Trey Hall, from the Methodist Church of Great Britain.  

The movement continues to enjoy global growth, reflected in a number of ways; this year alone, resources have been translated into additional languages including Maori, Arabic, Malagasy and Finnish to name a few.  

The award-winning app, (enabling Christians to access the daily video reflections, Bible readings, podcasts and alarm reminders to pray for 5 people to come in Jesus), continues to grow in popularity – having been downloaded thousands of times in 86 countries – more than twice as many as in 2018 (which was 36 countries).

Key findings from the annual feedback survey (which this year had 2,600 respondents), also found that:

• 92% of those taking part were praying for friends and family members to come to know Jesus – with nearly 2/3 (62%) of this group planning to follow up or talk to the people they were praying for;

• 70% of those who took part felt more encouraged to share their faith;

• 40% of respondents took part for the first time this year – which shows this is still very much a growing movement;

• 99% want to be involved again next year, the same figure as last year – demonstrating growth and value.

Thy Kingdom Come began as an invitation from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York to the Anglican Communion to pray for more people to come to faith in Jesus during Ascension to Pentecost inspired by Acts 2.

However the movement has grown astronomically with Christians from all traditions and backgrounds taking part – hosting special worship services, prayer meetings, prayer walks, continuous prayer sessions to Beacon events.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said:

“Once again the Spirit’s work in Thy Kingdom Come has humbled us, stretched us and taken breath away.

I have previously said I cannot remember in my life anything that I have been involved in where I have sense so clearly the work of the Spirit.

My sense of this only grows as we learn that this year we had engagement from followers of Christ in over 170 countries, take up across the denominations and traditions and the clear focus on seeking the empowering work of the Spirit for our effective witness.

I am looking forward to all God is doing in answer to our prayers.”

Written by: Kemi Bamgbose

Main image copyright: Thy Kingdom Come

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