The World Christian Fellowship (WCF) kicked off the 72-Hour Kingdom Prayer Vigil on Sunday under the Office of Christian Outreach, starting with internship coordinator Dan Haase’s speech at the opening event and worship led by the Chapel Band in Pierce Chapel. The event ended Wednesday with closing worship led by last year’s chapel band leader, senior Joy Pettigrew.
Students and faculty were able to sign up for 20-minute time slots to be a part of the continuous prayer time that took place in the Gold Star Chapel. The event focused on the global church, and was centered around a specific theme — participants were given a list of needs for different areas around the world and were invited to sign up to pray in both individual and group settings. The chapel provided an optimal, peaceful environment conducive to conscious conversation with the Lord. The setting contributed to a calming environment that allowed for focused prayer.
Why should Wheaton students get involved in praying for the global church? “You are part of the global body of Christ,” WCF’s Special Events Coordinator sophomore Bethany Thomas, said. “It can be easy to forget it when you allow yourself to stay only concerned with the Christians on this campus. We have a greater calling to care for, be aware of and lift up the cries of brothers and sisters around the globe.”
On Monday, students were encouraged to pray for justice around the world, especially for countries like Japan and India. Tuesday’s prayer time focused on hope for those affected by ISIS, the persecuted Church in the Middle East, and those who have yet to hear the Gospel. On the last day, Wednesday, the theme was “revival” for the global church.
Thomas said, “To me, the global church is the body of Christ, the believers from many different cultures, tongues, people groups and backgrounds. We are a diverse lot, yet we all have the same powerful God who unites us into his family to be his people and to care about our world and the people in it.” She went on to explain how prayer vigils can be venues for “equipment and empowerment” for the global church to flourish.
The aim of World Christian Fellowship is to inspire the community of Wheaton College to become invested in the concerns of the global church and the world through prayer and celebration of God’s work on an international level. The Kingdom Prayer Vigil paid homage to the historic 1995 revival that took place on Wheaton’s campus. A special service will be taking place in March; Chaplain Emeritus Kellough is scheduled to come and speak about the revival and how it is important to us.