Effecting change through prayer
The South American country of Suriname was the focus of this year’s World Day of Prayer.
At least two Glengarry churches – St. Finnan’s Cathedral in Alexandria and St. Michael and All Angels Anglican Church in Maxville – hosted an event on the afternoon of March 2. Both of them saw parishioners from in and around the county come in to pray for Suriname and offer some support.
The World Day of Prayer, now in its 98th year, is overseen by the Women’s Inter-Church Council of Canada (WICC), which celebrated its 100th anniversary in January. Friday’s service was written by the women of Suriname with local women reading the parts by proxy.
The service itself started with praise – the women thanked God for their beautiful country and the freedom to practise their faith – and then presented various items that symbolize the struggles of everyday life in Suriname. One lady, for example, was a single mother of five children, struggling to make a living by making cassava bread and selling it at the airport.
It should be noted that the World Day of Prayer isn’t just a “thoughts and prayers feel good” event. The WICC accepts offerings, which it uses to fund grants for various projects that benefit women.
Last year, the WICC received 225 application for World Day of Prayer grants. Some of them are in Ontario. For instance, in Milton, the Beloved Women Association requests $5,000 to help Syrian refugee women develop their talents and skills.
Elsewhere, in Selkirk, Manitoba, Survivor’s Hope Crises Centre Inc. is looking for $5,000 to expand its sexual assault crisis intervention services, and in Cameroon, the Leadership Improvement and Social Advocacy Centre requests $4,300 to rescue girls and stop genital mutilation.
WORLD DAY OF PRAYER: Glen Robertson resident Carmelle Hagen was at St. Finnan’s Cathedral in Alexandria where she participated in the World Day of Prayer.