Friday, March 13, 2009

Given to Prayer?

Many clergy today face with dismay and feelings of inadequacy the increasing demand for help with prayer because we have had no training for this work. We recognize that little in our past experience or training has prepared us for what people now seem to need. Few, if any, programs have existed whose purpose is to enable priests and ministers to respond to the request, "Teach me to pray."

-The Practice of Spiritual Direction by W. Barry and W. Connolly

Helping our pastors, ministers and priests to be equipped to teach people to pray is the goal of the Praying Pastors Project.

Why do we need Praying Pastors?

People today are seeking to learn more about how to pray effectively. We too often assume that prayer should just be something pastors instinctively know how to practice as well as teach. As a result, the topic has not received much focus in theolgoical training."Giving Ourselves to Prayer: An Acts 6:4 Primer for Ministry" was developed by America's National Prayer Committee to address this need and is the first-ever textbook focused solely on the topic of prayer. This 592-page book was written with the contributions of 80 authors, from both the academic community and the global prayer movement. However, many pastors may not be aware of the book or may not be able to afford the $39.99 retail price. This is where the Praying Pastors Project comes in.

How Does It Work?

Individuals, churches or business owners can sponsor one or more pastors in order to support the project. For a donation of $40, pastors receive (as a gift) the textbook "Giving Ourselves to Prayer" plus the devotional book "Love to Pray" plus membership in the "4 Pastors Only" website. Businesses can choose to receive additional advertising benefits for their business when they become a sponsor of several pastors within a community.

Community coordinators are an integral part of the success of the project since they are the people who work within a local community to identify the sponsors and get the resources distributed to the pastors. Coordinators receive financial compensation for their participation and get the opportunity to interface and pray with local pastors and business owners.
By bringing together those who can sponsor with those who need to be sponsored, we can help our pastors continue to be a blessing to our communities through the power that comes when people (and pastors) PRAY! Won't you consider "praying it forward"?
If you have not yet received a gift of these books, you can still join our community by making a $40 donation through our online store, which will cover the costs of the books and get you started. Better yet, why not ask someone to sponsor you? You can just send them to the site and they can become a sponsor and designate you to receive the gift.

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