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Stamford Hill London : The Women’s World Day of Prayer 2011

The first Friday in March is celebrated throughout the world as Women’s World Day of Prayer. This year it was compiled by the Christian women of Chile with the theme: “ How Many Loaves Have You”

Over three million people took part in over 170 countries in a globe circling day of prayer, beginning at sunrise in Tonga and continuing around the world until the final service took place at sunset some 35 hours later in neighbouring Western Somoa.

The Republic of Chile occupies a long narrow strip of land 2,640 miles long and 110 miles wide. At the beginning of our service we were given a booklet with a brief history of Chile inside the front cover: Population: 16.7 million. Religion: 86% Christianity and other Religions 5%, plus indigenous beliefs.

The main language is Spanish. Four ‘women’ of Chile greeted us in various languages spoken in Chile. The voices seeking Forgiveness and Intercession led us in prayer for these women and women throughout the world.

There were two services in our area, one held in a Catholic church in the afternoon at which one of our sisters had been chosen to take part in the service.

In the evening the service took place in an Anglican church. Two sisters accompanied by Mercedes, Dominique and Therese also Catherine and Mary McLoughney who happened to be in London at the time attended.

How Many Loaves Have You? Was an appropriated theme for this service. We heard of the importance of bread in Chile as can be seen from the quotation from the booklet. “Bread is the main food in our homes. No meal is complete without it. We show hospitality even in the poorest homes by sharing coffee, tea or mate (a herbal tea) and bread. In a world where hunger is a universal disgrace and where noise prevents us from hearing the anguished voices of so many sisters and brothers around us, sharing bread is a sign of solidarity and hope in Christ.”

Let us listen to the question that Jesus asked his disciples. How many loaves have you ? Let us take up the question for ourselves and ask. How many loaves have we? The readings from the bible were very appropriate for the theme. Deuteronomy 8:7-10 1 Kings 17:8-16 and Mark6:30-44. The hymns chosen were very appropriate and enhanced by the gifted musician on the keyboard.

An American lady gave the reflection at the afternoon session and a Brazilian pastor in the evening one. Both spoke with zeal and passion on our commitment where we find ourselves. Naturally we were very united with our sisters in Chile.

Both services were followed by a buffet so that we were given an opportunity to mingle with participants. This world day of prayer brings together women of all races, cultures and traditions.

Sister Ellen Corbett

Pour voir sur notre site l’article écrit par les soeurs de France
La journée mondiale de prière des femmes