The week began at 2pm Sat 8th August with 3 empty rooms at Abbeygate Church Colchester. By kick off at 6pm, these were transformed into a creative space for prayer, including maps, art materials, a beach themed room with genuine Mersea sand, and a quieter space with drapes, a cross and candles for more intimate time with God.
By 6pm Sat 13th August the rooms were crammed full of prayers, written, drawn and sculpted around the rooms. 59 people filled slots in the prayer room from 16 different congregations! Other visitors included friends and family invited by the pray-ers, and interested passers-by who just dropped in.
2 young people (dressed in Gothic style) called at the prayer room at 2am one night, because they wanted to sort out their heads
A grieving man saw the 24-7 prayer sign outside and asked for prayer for his family, and his own grief. 10mins before he came, £20 was found in the sand in the 'beach area'. It was then used to buy the man a bible, which he requested to take with him on a hike with friends!
and then on Friday night..... (10pm-4am!)
15 people from 10 congregations met at the prayer room and took shifts to stay in and pray or walk in small groups to pray blessing on the town - This brought the following opportunities
- Praying with a homeless man for forgiveness from guilt and suffering in his life. He said he felt peaceful and much better after our prayers
- Telling 2 policemen about the week of prayer, and offering to pray with them the policemen agreed we could pray for them after they had gone
- Assisting a drunk young man to pull up his pants and trousers, and helping him out of the middle of the road
- Bringing a homeless woman back to the prayer room for food, drink, shelter and prayer. She stayed in the prayer room until 4am, then was able to receive hospitality from the boiler room community. Later on Saturday she wrote a note of thanks in the prayer room
- Praying for a friend's brother who wanted to know what to believe
- A sense of fulfilling Matt 25v35-36 - Feeding the hungry, giving drinks to the thirsty, inviting in strangers, and clothing the naked...
Quotes and feedback from the prayer room
"A place that inspired us to pray"
"Surely this is a move of God"
" I just enjoyed space away from everything"
"I went in there and cried for hours"
"There's a real theme of mission here"
"Heavy, wonderful presence of God at 7.30am, pouring out until I felt full to bursting"
"Very aware of Jesus' suffering for us"
"Strong sense that God is planning to stir up the Church in Colchester and throw us out of our cosy nests"
"Thurs 6am 5 of us were praising the Lord with drums, guitar and piano"
- To Jesus for answered prayer and for doing new things
- To Abbeygate for their generosity in lending us the building
- To everyone who joined in with setting up, clearing up, praying and bringing friends