Thy Kingdom Come Beacon Celebration at St Albans Cathedral
12th June 2019
In the atmosphere of expectation appropriate to Pentecost around 1000 people from around Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire, Luton and north London, came together to celebrate Thy Kingdom Come’s ten-day wave of prayer for new disciples of Christ.
The service was attended by people of many denominations, some coming with their churches and some independently, all joining in with the lively singing led by Soul Survivor’s band and with the various forms of prayer on offer in different parts of St Albans Cathedral during the service.
Church leaders from different denominations were also present: from the Roman Catholic Methodist, Baptist and Coptic Orthodox Churches as well as the Church of England.
There was prayer for all traditions, personalities and age groups from drawing round your hand and naming five people or things to pray for, lighting a candle in the Shrine of St Alban, putting a cardboard apple on a prayer tree for answered prayers or praying with others, whether silently before the sacrament or in groups of two or three. The vastness of St Albans Cathedral accommodated them all.
Taking the evening’s theme: ‘How do people know I’m a Christian?’ there was a short reflection from Bishop Paul McAleenan, Auxiliary Roman Catholic Bishop of Westminster, on the suffering church. He addressed the question, how do we pray for those who suffer for making their faith known, or who live under the threat of persecution, and led prayer for those in such situations.
The talk from Revd Dr Paul Goodliff, General Secretary of Churches Together in England, offered some answers to the question, ‘How do people know I’m a Christian?’ He said, in a nutshell, how I talk, how I act and how I smell, the last being about creating ‘the aroma of Christ’ among those around us: having a good impact.