Wednesday, August 10, 2011

British Christians Respond with Prayer and Action as England Erupts into Anger and Violence Following Shooting by London Police

LONDON, UK -- Christian leaders in London and across the United Kingdom are calling for both prayer and action to help those affected by three days of rioting.

The rioting and looting follows the shooting death of 29-year-old Mark Duggan by police in Tottenham, London, last week.

Billy and Caroline Kennedy, Leaders of Pioneer, part of the New Community Network at Central Hall, St Mary Street, Southampton, told ANS: “I'm sure, like us, you've been glued to your TV screens and twitter accounts watching the unfolding events in London and in other cities across the UK.

“There are many friends of Pioneer, churches and community projects that we are linked with being affected by the recent turmoil. We are also aware that you will know others beyond our network who find themselves in a similar position.”

The Kennedys said: “We wanted to write to you all and encourage you to see if there are ways you can help and support those affected. We can often feel overwhelmed by the scale of what is going and feel paralyzed. But there are things we can do, whether we are local to the areas most affected or not.”

The Kennedys suggested “a simple phone call, text or email to check people are okay would be appreciated.

“For those of you on twitter, you'll be aware that the top three tweets trending globally are #riotcleanup, #prayforlondon and #londonriots.”

The Kennedys are directing friends to “(which) is a very practical response to the events of recent days. If you are in the areas affected why not get involved and encourage your congregations also. What a great response.

“For those of who can't get to the affected areas, we can pray,” they said.

The Kennedys also told ANS that Pete Grieg, 24-7prayer, will be recording a short video later today from Tottenham, giving some prayer pointers. Readers are asked to keep an eye on

**Phil & Julie Stokes, leaders of The Well Community Church in Camberwell, organized a prayer meeting last night for local Christians. At 12.00pm today they will be meeting with the Southwark Borough Council, where Phil serves as Dean to the Council.

**Steve Clifford, in his role at the Evangelical Alliance, is being called on for comment. Pray for wisdom.

**Patrick Regan, director of XLP and member of The Well, has already been quoted on TV as someone who has the respect of some of those who are involved with the rioting.

“Let's pray for the police. I have a number of friends who serve in the police force. Let's pray for wisdom for those in charge and safety for every officer,” the Kennedys wrote.

“It's time for the church to stand up, pull together and work and pray for a new day in our nation,” they said.

Adrian Hawkes, who runs a ministry in north London, wrote: “Obviously many of Rainbow (Fellowship) live in Tottenham, although most of us were away at our camp, 200+ there. People getting saved... but Gareth and Jo who lead Rainbow live right by the main fire, I understand his garden is covered with ash, we also have friend who lived in a flat above the carpet shop which was the first place to go up in flames, they escaped with their baby to their car and went to stay with in-laws, they are part of another London church.

“Coming to the office today I can see the cloud of thick black smoke pouring over our area, our office is in Edmonton, London, (in the) borough of Enfield. Yesterday coming home from the camp, even areas that were not immediately affected where all closed by 3.00p.m., shuttered and locked up with streets very quiet, even in Barnet. I do think most importantly that our young people need to hear that there is a God to live for, who gives us real purpose in life. Currently we are running a small college where we take in NEET young people (Not in Education Employment or Training) they do not have any purpose.”

Pastor David Wise, of Greenford Baptist Church, located in the London Borough of Ealing, where riots occurred Monday night, writes: “As you will already know Central and West Ealing were areas where there was rioting and looting last night. We are calling GBC together tonight to pray from 8PM till 9PM.”

Following some concern for safety, the Seventh-Day Adventist youth department has now severely downgraded this evening’s pre-arranged event and are only planning on a few experienced Youth leaders meeting at Tottenham.


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