|2005 Women's World Day of Prayer|
updated 18th March
Women's World Day of Prayer 2005 in Tullamore
This year the women of our Church hosted the annual Women's World Day of Prayer Service. It was held in the Day Chapel on Friday 4th March at 7.30 pm.
The women of Poland compiled this years service with the theme 'Let our Light shine'
About 70 attended, Mary Kelly and Lily Whelan were the leaders and Sister Ann the reader. Daisy Abraham (Church of Ireland) Jean Gill (Presbyterian Church) and Vicky Lumley Methodist Church) took part. The musical accompaniment was provided by Marie McKay (Presbyterian Church) on keyboard and ** on guitar. Members of Saint Mary's Youth Centre provided the dramatisation for one of the readings. Sister Genny gave a thoughtful and inspiring homily on the theme of the service.
In Tullamore the service for 2006 will be held (DV) in the Methodist Church, Church Street on Friday 3rd March at 7.30 pm.
As far back as 1812, a woman living in Boston, USA, called Mary Webb, started a movement for women to unite in prayer on a monthly basis for missionaries abroad. Sixty-five years later, in 1887, this idea has spread to Canada, England, Australia and Africa. During this time, other women around the world were praying for home missions, and in 1920 the various groups combined and called for a united day of prayer for home and foreign missions on the first Friday of Lent. The following quote is from the 1928 Word Day of Prayer committee: "We have learned the great lesson of praying with, rather than for, our sisters of other races and nations â¦ enriching our experience and releasing the power to enable us to accomplish our difficult tasks". By 1930 there were 33 countries observing the Day.
The first Women's World Day of Prayer services were held in three locations in Ireland in 1934 - to-day services are held in Ireland in over 200 l0cations. Irish women are united on the Day with other Christian women in over 170 countries and islands around the globe, praying with and for each other. The service is translated into more than 60 languages and 1,000 dialects. The Day begins at the International Dateline in Tonga in the Pacific, and a great "Mexican wave" of prayer rises and moves across the world and back to Samoa on the other side of the International Dateline.
"As o'er each continent and island the dawn leads on another day,
INTO THE FUTURE
Women's World Day of Prayer is the largest ecumenical movement in the world organised by women for women (although in recent years men have been warmly welcomed to join in the Service!).
What makes it special is that we can get to know each other better; we can affirm and celebrate our faith and share our hopes and fears, joys and sorrow and realise that we do not stand alone but are a part of a greater community of Christians around the world and we can identify with those who are suffering.
We always try to involve younger women and appreciate their vibrant witness and contributions, realising that we may be fanning into flame the gift of God that is in all of us. We aim to be inclusive of women of every age so that we might be more effective in correcting social ills. Even the preparation for the local service can lead to new insights and new understandings. Sometimes a deeper sense of connection comes from the study of a country, it's history and conditions. Sometimes we learn more than we anticipated - the process of learning is a dialogue and the learning is mutual, so let us go forward into the future confident that God will guide and bless us and hear our prayers.