As I settle down to write an article for the June magazine, i find myself thinking about this week and last weeks readings about Jesus saying “I am the true vine” and then his new command “to love one another”. I find myself thinking what good idea the pray chain we used to have was, as it kept us all routed in each other and in Jesus even when we ere in our own homes. So what happened to the pray chain?? Well it sort of petered out didn’t it! As people on the chain moved away, the chain seems to get harder to maintain. So I think it is time to renew it and set a new one up.
As before my darling wife, Jane will coordinate it. Some of you will be asking - what is a pray chain?? Well this is a very simple and very effective way of very quickly getting important information or requests for prayer throughout the parish and beyond … it works like this:
A chart is drawn up with all the names of the people in this sort of format
The vicarage is the first place to be contacted
The “vicarage” contacts 2 people (3 now praying)
Each of those people contact 2 others (7 now praying)
Each contact 2 others (15 now praying)
Each contact 2 others (31 now praying)
Each contact 2 others (63 now praying)
As you can see in a very short space of time each person has only made 2 phone calls, but 63 people could be praying… If you call a number and there is no answer, call the person on the link that the person would have called if they had been in (sounds complicated, but not when you see the real working chart with real names) If the person is out but has an answer phone, leave a message so that they know what is happening, but go to the next on the list as well.
Please let Jane know if you would like to be involved in this scheme…. It is a way in which we all, whatever age or physical ability, can be involved in looking after and praying for our brothers and sisters. Prayer is vital when there is a crisis or ill health, it can support in a way that no other help can. Jane always gives this great example of a pray chain in action -
“One example is one night Alun rang me to say that he had been involved in a shocking accident on the M! …one man was probably dead, our car was written off but Alun seemed to be o,k he did not know how long he would be, the police were looking after him! What could I do???? NOTHING, I was at home with the children it was late at night in the winter …. SO…. I rang friends to pray…the feeling of comfort and support was amazing, yes the situation was still shocking and frightening, but to know that God had a hand in things was a great blessing. “
The situations needing prayer are not always as dramatic as that (thankfully) but nevertheless important in their own right.
I would like the scheme to be up and running by summer so please as soon as you can let Jane know if you are going to take part. You may feel you only want to do it for a few months, that is ok, your “link” can then be taken on by somebody else.