The Diocesan Board of Education (DBE) for The Church of England in Lancashire is taking to social media in a big way to encourage prayer during this year's 'Thy Kingdom Come' prayer initiative.
Thy Kingdom Come is an ecumenical and global prayer event led by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York.
It encourages Christians from around the world to join together in prayer for the 10 days between the Christian calendar events of Ascension and Pentecost (May 18-28).
Parishes and schools across the County are actively organising many prayer activities to coincide with Thy Kingdom Come and you can keep up with what's happening via our social media channels on Twitter @cofelancs and Facebook/blackburndiocese
And this year the DBE is also focusing on prayer for youth work and young people in the Diocese through its existing Instagram channels.
Daily and throughout Thy Kingdom Come, the youth team will be on @YouthWorkStateofMind Instagram stories at 11am to pray for youth leaders and their young people.
Focusing on a different theme each day they are covering varying aspects of youth ministry including prayers for growth, vision and energy.
This short time of prayer is open to all, and anyone who wants to join the youth team in praying can do so by following @YouthWorkStateofMind on Instagram. Find them every day on their stories.
Meanwhile, the @ThisisAbide Instagram account which is for young people aged 11-17, will also be participating in the national event. Every day a member of the DBE's Abide team will be on Instagram stories, exploring prayer and will discuss questions like...
The Abide team will also be sharing social media videos from Thy Kingdom Come featuring people like Ellie Limebear, Guvna B and Jamie Jones-Buchanan, all discussing their experiences of prayer as well as showing some videos from the Christian organisation, 'The Way'.
The aim is to encourage young people to pray. Young people wanting to join Abide for Thy Kingdom Come just need to follow @ThisisAbide on Instagram.
Ben Green, Diocesan Youth Adviser, who masterminded the idea, with support from DBE Social Media Assistant, Rebecca Whittaker, commented today: "Encouraging and helping young people to pray, one of the building blocks of a vibrant, living faith in God, is something we are really passionate about. With social media being a space young people engage with, it seemed that providing videos and content for them to interact with around Thy Kingdom Come was an obvious extension of what we already do through our Instagram presence.”
Archdeacon David Picken, Chair of the Diocesan Board of Education, is enthusiastic about the Instagram prayer initiative and said today: "Since it launched several years ago, Thy Kingdom Come has gone from strength to strength, partly due to the way in which people engage with the event by innovating new, fresh and interesting ways to pray year-on-year.
"For anyone to grow in their faith there can be no better way than to pray regularly. Using social media platforms like Instagram, where many young people spend time anyway, and using it in this way to encourage and support them in their prayer life is a great initiative from the DBE team."
Additional words: Rebecca Whittaker
Captions for above pictures, top to bottom:
Ronnie Semley, 19/05/2023