THE INAUGURAL ANGLICAN DIOCESAN PRAYER CONFERENCE 13-15th JUNE 2019 ST. LUKE’S PARISH, SRI AMAN
PRESSING FORWARD THROUGH PRAYER PHILIPPIANS 3: 13-14
The Anglican Diocese of Kuching organised the 1st Prayer Conference in Sarawak at St. Luke’s Parish, Sri Aman from 13th June to 15th June 2019 with the theme “Pressing Forward Through Prayer” (Philippians 3:13 – 14).
A total of 600 parishioners from the various Anglican Parishes of Sarawak, Brunei Darussalam and West Malaysia attended the Conference. The biggest contingent of over two hundred participants came from the Central region of Sarawak.
The three key speakers, Rt. Rev’d Danald Jute, Bishop of Anglican Diocese of Kuching, Brian Heasley, Director of 24-7 Prayer International, from Lambeth Place, seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury,England and Chrisanne Chin, Director of 24-7 Prayer Malaysia, were invited to speak during the Conference.
Other local speakers were Archdeacon Stanley Bunseng, Canon Dennis Gimang, Rev’d Trevor Tinda, Rev’d Bradley Sangan and Rev’d Alfred Damu.
Registration started at 3pm on 13th June 2019, the first day of the conference.
The Ministry Team from various parishes, led by Sis. Grace Lee, Cecelia Reges and Canon Dennis Gimang and Rev’d Sika Karong gathered for the Prayer Brief and later, met up and prayed with the keynote speakers.
The Master of Ceremony was the Organising Chairman, Rev’d Ivor Lim . He was assisted by Rev’d Elebis during his opening prayer, translating his prayer from English to Iban. The Chairman introduced his working committee to the participants before the Opening prayer for the session.
Archdeacon Jamal Senada, the Vicar of the hosting church, St. Luke’s Parish, welcomed all those attending the Prayer Conference, comprising members of 43 parishes from Sarawak and Brunei and also a team from West Malaysia.
Praise and worship was led by Bro. Franklin Simon from St. Faith’s Church and Sis. Ronit Ruth Mason.
The Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Kuching and Brunei Darussalam, the Right Reverend Bishop Danald Jute, gave the introduction to the Prayer Conference and beat the Gong three times to declare the conference opened.
In his keynote address, Bishop Danald Jute spoke on the purpose of organising this Prayer Conference was firstly to understand that through constant prayers, God our Heavenly Father, wanted to hear our needs and to communicate with us as we responded with God’s desire to have an intimate relationship with us. Touching on the theme “Pressing Forward Through Prayer” in accordance with scripture Philippians 3:13 – 14, as we celebrate the one hundred and seventy years of the Anglican Diocese, there was a need to keep in mind that reaching forward since the year 1848 when Anglican was established in Sarawak by Rev’d Francis Thomas McDougall and his wife Harriete, we must maintain an intimacy and a call for a mature Christian faith and life with God through constant prayers as one of the fundamental pillar in our quest to be a builder of His Kingdom.
The Prayer Ministry Team assisted by Rev’d Alfred Damu and Rev’d Sika ministered to those in need. The day session ended at 10pm with a closing prayer by Rev’d Trevor Tinda.
On the second day, the 14th June, the session started at 8am with the opening prayer recited by Canon James Juhari followed by Praise and Worship led by Bro. Franklin and Sis. Ruth.
The morning devotion “My House Shall Be Called The House of Prayer” (Isaiah56:7) was preached by Rev’d Alfred Damu.
A church needs to open its door to welcome and share the words of God to all. A missionary church should be a church of prayer.
Building a culture of prayer
“Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before (Daniel 6:10)
- Praying regularly
- Focused towards Jerusalem
- Demonstrate his priority
What do we pray for?
Prayer In Discipleship Training
The non-believers attended the Alpha training and the confirmation class and from there the Youth and adults are given the Discipleship Training and the leadership training and finally form small bible study groups.
The strategy is to start from the young ones in the Sunday School, teaching them how to pray and what to pray. Prayer camps are organized for the youths. The Youth and adults are trained in discipleship. A family Prayer Altar can be set up at home and small groups are encouraged to go Prayer Walking around neighbourhood. Corporate prayer meetings are organized weekly or monthly among the Ministry groups to focus on prayer needs and upcoming events. Anglican Prayer movement and mobilization (APMM) is formed with Rev’d Ivor Lim leading the various prayer groups such as 24-7 prayer, the Friday Bishop Chapel Prayer and the APMM gatherings at various parishes in Sarawak.
King David prayed in many ways, praising God with songs and dances.
Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10). God wants us to grow in confidence, from silent prayer, to open our lips in praising God. Pray in spirit and feel God’s presence in whatever we do. Have intimacy with God. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)
And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.(Luke 11:1)
When we pray, we are building an intimate relationship with God. Lord Jesus taught us to pray for others besides ourselves. Our Anglican Liturgy is full of scriptures and we use the intercession as basis to prayer.
Types of Prayer -. ACTS and PACTS
ACTS – Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving , Supplication.
PACTS – Preparation, Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication.
Believe that when we pray in faith, our prayer is already answered. “Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in Heaven” (Matthew 18:19).
Experience God’s grace and mercy in our intimacy with God.
At 10am the participants had their tea break and fellowship with one another.
After tea break and praise and worship, the invited speaker, Brian Heasley spoke on ‘Why 24-7 Prayer?’. He also spoke on the topic ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ . 24-7 Prayer was started 20 years ago. Every great revival is through prayer where church will grow. God sees our hearts and nothing can be hidden from Him as in Genesis 3:9.
24-7 created rooms (gardens) for us to be gathered and joined together with God constantly in prayer. Acts 1:14 “These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.” Acts 2:2 “ And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.” So with constant prayer, suddenly the prayer is answered. Mdm. Limok translated his message to Jako Iban.
Mdm. Chrisanne Chin delivered her topic on ‘Life in the Secret Prayer : How to pray for one hour’.
Matthew 26:40-41 40 And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? 41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
We live in a noisy world encountering many forms of distraction and busy multitasking. We have to build up a habit of stillness in a quiet room and spend time to pray with Adoration, confession and Thanksgiving. Mdm. Limok translated her briefing to Iban language.
After briefing, small groups of three to four were formed to practice praying for one hour using ‘The Lord’s Prayer’.
Prayer models were suggested using ‘The Lord’s Prayer’ as the basis – Adoration, Confession & Supplication, Thanksgiving, Intercession.
The next topic was on ‘Reviving The Church : How to run a powerful Church Prayer Meeting’
- Establish a regular prayer meeting – prayer meeting is not an option but the heartbeat of the church
- Pastor and all church leaders must be involved – Church leaders must lead and live by example
- Plan, Plan, Plan – The biggest human difference between a vibrant, effective prayer meeting and a dull, ineffective one is planning
- Be creative – Use variety instead of set form, use different models
- Spend time in worship – Centre point is God. Enjoy God and bring everyone to focus on Him- Rule of thumb, spend more time in worship than in intercession.
- Pray with Expectation – Be intentional and expectant when you pray. Expect God to answer your prayer.
- Celebrate as a family of God – prayer meetings don’t have to sound like funerals. Celebrate God’s goodness through worship and fellowship.
- Include Youth and children – get them to huddle in small groups with the adults who should show example.
- Persevere and Don’t stop – Be patient, Praying out loud is difficult for some people. Praying for 30-60 minutes can feel awkward at first. Keep at it. The church will grow a lot in praying together as a church but it takes practice to go forward. Don’t be discouraged. Remember that the devil wants a church that doesn’t pray.
- Keep up the Pace and Prepare to Stretch – Don’t be too fixated on keeping to it but it is good to set a schedule.
- Document Every Prayer Meeting – Keep a Church Journal to help the congregants to REMEMBER God’s goodness through answered prayers.
- Pray don’t Preach – It’s a prayer meeting. Don’t take up prayer time with preaching and sharing. Fill the prayer meeting fully with worship and intercession.
Participants were grouped under respective parishes and to discuss ways and means to improve the prayer life in their respective church.
After lunch break, the session continued with the opening prayer by Dean Kho Thong Meng . Praise and Worship led by Rev’d Wilston and Ruth. Canon Andie Shie was the MC for the afternoon session.
Chrisanne continued the session on ‘Practicalities of Prayer Ministry’.
The 5 principles of Prayer Ministry are :
- Ministry of the Holy Spirit
- Biblical Ministry
- Dignity of the individual
- Harmonious relationship within the team
- The body of Christ
The foundation of Prayers.
– Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen (Matthew 28: 20 )
-The role of the Prayer Ministry is Healing.
-The Kingdom of God holds together a theology of suffering and glory.
– Chronic sickness, disability and the differently abled, holds the big picture all creation, physical, social, political and personal, Our attitude, Confidence and Caution.
– All glory goes to God.
A model of Personal Wholeness
Types of Healing
Physical Healing, Spiritual Healing, Emotional Healing and Deliverance from Evil. All four types are interrelate and may overlap.
Model for Prayer Ministry
- Always work in a team.
- Worship and Praise in Spirit ‘I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.’ (Romans 12:1)
- The Practical steps –
- Asking the question
- Listen and ask more questions
- Do everything with LOVE
- Basics on Prayer – The Lord’s Prayer
- Types of Prayer – Blessing, Petition (pray together to ask God for healing), Command (speak directly to the pain or condition), Intercession(pray on their behalf) and Rebuke (When dealing with the demons).
- Things to have – Breath freshener, box of tissues, plastic bags, blankets or sheets, pillows or cushions and Anointing oil.
Post Prayer care – Biblical basics for after care (Colossians 1:28-29) 28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: 29 Where unto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.
– Prayer counselling, Love and compassion, and give a word of scripture for their personal healing.
- Go and sin no more
- Make restitution
- Read scriptures
- Establish accountability
- Engage in more prayer at another time
- Fight the enemy.
At the end of the session, the participants were grouped in 2 or more to pray for one another.
The next session speaker was Rev’d Trevor Tinda from St. Helen’s Church Serian on the topic ‘Praying Through Brokenness’.
He talked on unity at Mt. Hermon and the Prayer Conference aim to retain this by quoting Psalm 133
‘ Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!
2 It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments;
3 As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.
Brokenness yield fruitfulness and revival in prayer life. Healing, prosperity and blessings from God to those He breaks.
Death to self – John 12:24-25 ‘24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.
25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.’
A seed produces no fruit. If it dies, it grows and produces.
If Jesus remained alive, he remained alone. He has to die for us to produce life.
Obstacles to Christian life is thinking that God needs us.
Effectiveness in Prayer
What is brokenness?
God removes all hindrances that stop us from depending on Him alone. If we trust anythingin us, we refuse to be broken. We have an inner desire to be dependent of Christ. There are areas of our lives that Hod does not have control of. The self life is an independent attitude that God wants to control. We all have all these. This area that we have not submitted is hindering God’s work especially prayer.
He who loses his life will save it and lose the best by holding on to self life. (John 12:25)
He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. (Matthew 10:37)
Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. (Matthew 16:24)
And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5:23)
Essence of Brokenness allows the Holy Spirit to express the life of Christ through our human bodies, happens when we submit completely. Brokenness is important and it’s a process.
Brokenness is God’s way of dealing with independent life. The most gifted and determined people are the ones difficult to break.
Rev’d Trevor concluded this session by giving a few questions for the participants to ponder-
- Do you want God’s best for your life?
- Are you willing to surrender all to Him?
- Are you willing to submit to breaking?
- What am I holding on to that will cause me to miss God’s best?
The afternoon session ended with Chrisanne talk on Light Up Sarawak, preparing state-wide 24-7 prayer. The participants divided themselves in groups according to location and prayed to seek the peace of the land (Jeremiah 29:7)
The evening session started after the group photo for the Prayer Conference was taken at 7.15pm.
Opening prayer was recited by Rev’d Alfred Damu followed by praise and worship led by Bro, Franklin.
A special collection was done and Thanksgiving prayer was recited by Archdeacon Andrew Paha.
Mr. Brian Heasley gave the last keynote address ‘The Wounded Healer’
Christians must be in the future, the people of prayer. God is calling us to be people of payer.
As Christians, we have to breathe in and pray to God first before we can pray for others. (Psalm 131:2)
We must make it the business and delight of our lives to seek him.
Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus. (Acts 4:13)
And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. (Mark 1:35)- the desert
45 And straightway he constrained his disciples to get into the ship, and to go to the other side before unto Bethsaida, while he sent away the people. 46 And when he had sent them away, he departed into a mountain to pray. (Mark 6:45-46) – the mountain
32 And they came to a place which was named Gethsemane: and he saith to his disciples, Sit ye here, while I shall pray. 33 And he taketh with him Peter and James and John, and began to be sore amazed, and to be very heavy; 34 And saith unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful unto death: tarry ye here, and watch. 35 And he went forward a little, and fell on the ground, and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. 36 And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt. (Mark 14:32-36) – the garden
5 points to help your prayer life
- Practise stillness – Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass. (Psalm 37:7)
Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.(Psalm46: 10)
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; (Ecclesiastes 3:7 )
- Praying the scripture – The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. (Psalm 23: 1)
- Memorise – Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. (Psalm 119:11)
- Using objects – A holding cross, a marble, a picture etc
- Practice examination – Replay, Rejoice, Repent and Reboot.
Prayer and Ministry led by Brian Heasley and assisted by Canon Dennis Giman, Rev’d Sika, LR Gilbert and the Ministry Team ministered and prayed for the needy after his sharing.
The second day session ended at 10pm.
On the 3rd day, 15th June, the session started with opening prayer by Rev’d Ivor Lim and announcement of the event ‘Gempuru Besai Anglika Ke 3’ by Archdeacon Jose Jol Endru of LSA and to be hosted by St. Basil Church at Association of Churches Sarawak, Stampin from 4th to 6th July 2019 followed by Praise and Worship.
Archdeacon Stanley Bunseng in the Morning Devotion, spoke of “Knowing Jesus in his fullness”
Philippians 3:13 – Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before.
We are like Paul in prison, feeling al the pains and suffering because we have not attain His Fullness, but we must press on single-mindedly. Our walk with Jesus Christ is not to look back and be hampered with the past but to look forward and press on.
We have to strain forward to force ourselves to the utmost to move forward with Christ. We press on towards the goal of the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus, giving thanks for our salvation.
After the morning devotion, Canon Denis Gimang presented the topic ‘ Healing and Deliverance in Sarawak.’ He stressed on the importance of Prayer life in a ministry. Prayer is the life line to our relationship with God.
Paul is commissioned to pray for all and urged his followers to pray for him.
Prayer of Breakthrough – Apart from setting up mission schools, the McDougalls offered their prayer support to James Brooke. As Christians we cannot deny the fact that the power of prayers of the missionaries had contributed to the success of James Brooke in setting up his dynasty that lasted for 100 years that transformed Sarawak once known as the Land of Headhunters to be what she is today. Batu Kawa was an area full of witchcraft due to the presence of the police field force camp. Kilogrammes of witchcrafts were surrendered by those who attended his seminars at two different places in 1996.
Authoritative Prayer – the sitting of Jesus at the right hand side of the throne is the position of victory to bind and loosen the grip of Satan.
Prayer can protect us from evil doers and Satan. Honour God and He will honour you. Prayer enable us to remove mountains. Revival has to start with the clergy.
Group photos of organising committee and various participating parishes were taken during the tea break.
Rev’d Bradley Sangan Prayed for the Persecuted Church. Despite the rampant persecution of churches, they are still growing. He prayed for the Christians and their children, the missing persons and the Government to find them. He prayed for the persecuted churches steadfast in faith despite opposition.
Luke 6:27 – 31
27 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you,
28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.
29 And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak forbid not to take thy coat also.
30 Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again.
31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.
Brian Heasley spoke on ‘Thy Kingdom Come’. With constant prayers, suddenly your prayer will be answered. It may not be what you prayed for but God will give you something better. God works in every circumstances.
The last topic was ‘Pressing Forward: Prayer for Revival’ presented by Bishop Danald Jute.
He spoke on the unanswered prayer during Habakkuk’s time towards end of 600BC. His pleading with God as in Habakkuk 3:2 ‘ O Lord, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O Lord, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy.’
Today is the day of salvation. We have to pray together the same issues, pleading God to do again His act and in his wrath show His Mercy.
He gave thanks to Rev’d Ivor and the team in organising the event and the speakers , Brian Heasley and Chrisanne Chin and all the clergies and participants, Archdeacon Jamal Sanada and St. Luke Parish for hosting the event and Principal of SMK, St. Luke, Cikgu Limok and students of SMK St. Luke in making this event a success.
The last session is the commissioning of the participants to be involved in prayer ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ inline with our Diocese needs.
In appreciation, the speakers were presented with love gifts by Bishop Danald.
Before the close of the conference, Canon Dennis Gimang ministered to the participants in need.
By 1.30pm, Bishop Danald Jute prayed for the closing of the Inaugural Diocesan Prayer Conference and the final hymn was sung. To God be the Glory.