Prayer-walkers lift up every corner of Southwestern campus
Social media and God’s guidance have paved the way for a heartfelt prayer outreach that encompasses the Southwestern campus on Wednesday mornings.
“At the beginning of the semester, God had laid prayer on many hearts,” says Kathi Rogers, director of the Naylor Children’s Center. “It had been talked about in many of my circles. God spoke to me to organize the first one loosely, and God continued putting on my heart to invite people to pray.”
On Aug. 19, Rogers posted on her Facebook wall: “Seminary family, I would like to invite you to prayer-walk Wednesday at 10 a.m. Pray for the new year, leadership, wisdom, students, families and peace. Ultimately, we need to pray for God’s will, not our own desires. I am so excited to band together as one unified in Christ. John 5:14.”
Terri Stovall, dean of women’s programs, and theology student Lauren Walker assisted Rogers to propel the invitation campus-wide. On Aug. 22, the day before the fall semester began, an initial group of about 25-30 women, many with their children, divided into groups to prayer-walk the campus.
Using a campus prayer-walking guide provided by Stovall, the people and programs housed in each building were lifted up. “I just wanted you to know that we prayed specifically for you as we walked, and will continue to do so throughout this academic year,” Stovall wrote to interim president D. Jeffrey Bingham.
Though initially planned as a one-time event, similar prayer-walking occurred each Wednesday thereafter. On Sept. 4, Kyle Walker, vice president for student services, spread the word via a campus-wide email: “On Wednesdays at 10 a.m., many Southwesterners are walking the campus for a few minutes to pray,” he wrote. “They are praying for the campus, professors, students, staff, classes, chapel, evangelistic efforts and so much more. This time of prayer began because God moved people to pray.”
“I am writing not only to let you know, but also to invite you to participate,” he continued. “There is no central meeting place, program or time limit. This is simply a time for us collectively to call on God to act and move in mighty ways among us.”
“The idea is to use this time on Wednesdays to pray for our leadership, campus, students, faculty and staff needs,” says Rogers. “There is not a regimented plan. Just walk and pray for God to touch and move in His way and His will.”
The prayer guide suggests prayers to be lifted at more than 30 campus locations. For instance, in the School of Evangelism and Missions wing of Mathena Hall, prayers are suggested for Southwestern alumni who are serving around the world, that they have opportunities to share the Gospel. In the Scarborough College wing of Mathena Hall, walkers are encouraged to pray for the many young adults attending, asking God to lay a solid foundation for this young generation to reach the world for Christ.
The prayer-walking guide is available from Kathi Rogers at email@example.com.