Hosting a Forty40 Prayer Space
In the story of Esther, in the Bible, when the Jewish people were facing a national crisis they came together to fast and pray for three days (Esther 9: 31). Fasting and praying for justice is a great way bring God’s perspective on hunger and injustice into the public debate and to seek real change for our neighbours in need.
Lent is an opportunity for us to fast and pray for a just world, in line with God’s ethical commitment to those who are hungry. Lent is a 40 day period that, in 2014, begins on the 5th March (Ash Wednesday) and continues until 13th April (Palm Sunday). Our National Day of Fasting will take place on Friday 4th April.
Could your church, foodbank, or other gathering, be a Forty40 Prayer Space on 3rd April 2014?
Great Ideas for hosting your own Prayer Space
- Have resources available for people to find out more about the challenges we face in bringing an end to hunger (see our resources page).
- Using the story of Jesus feeding the 5000, ask visitors to make cut out loaves and fish of various shapes, colours and sizes. These are to be written on with prayers, protest, or pledges and then attached to a large white sheet. These will be used as part of the final act of witness on Wednesday of Holy Week in London.
- Have copies of the #Forty40 Bible Study and Daily Prayer booklets available (order online: endhungerfast.co.uk)
- Have people fasting for a day on a rota so that the whole of Lent is covered in public fasting and prayer.
- Have a “Pilgrim’s Journal” where people can describe their experience of prayer and fasting throughout Lent.
- Make sure that local press know what you’re doing and why you’re doing it.
- Raise money for a local project that’s aimed at eradicating hunger or for your Lent appeal.
- Work across different traditions and faiths to use the vigil as a sign of local unity.
- Invite a speaker to launch the Forty40 Prayer Space.
- Encourage local liturgists to write prayers for all ages to support those holding a Forty40 Prayer Space.
- Set up some prayer stations for visitors.
- Have banner making resources available and make #EndHungerFast banners for Palm Sunday.
- End with a special service on Wednesday of Holy Week or come to the gathering in London.
- Tweet your Forty40 Prayer Space with the hashtag #EndHungerFast and #Forty40 .