Introducing Kathryn

You may have noticed recently that 24-7 Prayer Scotland has our first ever intern. And she is smashing it! We thought you should all get to know her a bit better as you will be seeing her around more and quite likely receiving some emails from her. Here she is.

Hello, everyone,
I thought I’d officially introduce myself. I’m Kathryn and over this coming year I am interning with 24-7 Prayer Scotland. 

What does that mean? It means I spend one day a week working alongside Crystal in our office space in Edinburgh: organising, doing admin, helping with our social media platforms and helping to tell your stories about prayer. I also get the privilege of traveling around Scotland, seeing what is going on with prayer in this beautiful country.
Apart from interning I am also a postgraduate student, studying Career Guidance at Napier University.

I first got involved with 24-7 Prayer four years ago when my church in Edinburgh sent a two-week Mission Team out to work with 24-7 Ibiza.
24-7 Ibiza is a missional expression of 24-7 Prayer in the heart of the clubbing community of San Antonio. The work partners time spent in the prayer room with offering prayer and night time street assistance to those on the streets of the West End.

I cannot say I loved that first year in Ibiza – it was challenging and pushed me far out of my comfort zone. However, after a few months back home I could not shake Ibiza from my mind, and I found myself drawn back, not for two weeks, but rather for two or three months at a time.
Like I said, I really did not love that first year. I was probably the least qualified person possible, with a fear of vomit and not even confident in praying out loud in front of other people.
However, and far more importantly, during those two weeks I learned how to pray, how to intercede for what was going on around me and I was hearing from God for myself, the island and back home. Praying for strangers on the streets was not an occasional occurrence, rather it was the norm and so was God answering prayers and moving in the situations around us. It has made me come to the conclusion that prayer is pretty important; in fact, it is the bedrock of my faith. I began to think, how can anything come to be if we are not on our knees petitioning for it, spending time with our Father or listening to his gentle stirring voice?

After getting back from Ibiza last year I heard of a new community group at my church centred on the values of 24-7 Prayer and I immediately joined. What I found was family; a family with a desire to learn and pray together for anything and everything under the sun. Through this I met Crystal and learned more about 24-7 Prayer outside of Ibiza, specifically in Scotland. I realised that the God I saw moving so powerfully in Ibiza was the same God in Scotland and He appeared to be moving here too!

In its most simplistic form I am interning with 24-7 Prayer Scotland because I’m pretty fond of Scotland, it’s my home, and its beauty and brokenness has a tight grip on my heart. I also love prayer, as prayer connects us to the heart of God. And when mission and justice are centred first and foremost in prayer – there is a shift in the atmosphere. And when this occurs in the arms of a praying community, united in faith and hope – well, breakthrough is likely to be right around the corner!

My House Shall Be A House Of Prayer

There is a beautiful statement from the revivalist of the 1800’s, Charles G. Finney, that says, “Nothing tends more to cement the hearts of Christians than praying together. Never do they love one another so well as when they witness the outpouring of each other’s hearts in prayer.”

We were privileged to be witness to this truth while with two different prayer communities last weekend – one in Irvine and one in Dundee.

Jill Weber, Director of Houses of Prayer at 24-7 Prayer and Global Convenor of the Order of the Mustard Seed, made her way north to join us at 24-7 Prayer Scotland in visiting these two incredible communities.

If you were at the 24-7 Prayer Scotland Gathering this past February, you would have a heard a bit from both of these communities. We will also be sharing more of their stories and vision for the future on this blog site later this year so watch this space!

But in this story, we want to focus in on the beauty of the relationships within these communities.

The Irvine team are from different congregations, even different denominations, but for a good few years now they have been praying and working together to serve the local churches through facilitating some of the most creative prayer rooms you will ever see (one even included an actual boat!) and teaching others how to run a 24-7 prayer week. They have facilitated unity in prayer time and again amongst the churches in Irvine and they are able to do this because of the unity in which they walk with one another.
For this team, the task, the vision is not the most important thing but rather relationship – relationship with God and with one another. They care for one another, look out for one another and they draw near to God in prayer before stepping out into anything. As a result, their hearts are overwhelmed with God’s love for one another and for their community, especially for the young people and for those without community to look after them. They are actively seeking to be the hands and feet of Jesus to the lonely, broken and hurting in their community and are now dreaming around some new ideas and ways to engage even more.
One of those ideas is what could it look like for Irvine to have a House of Prayer, thus Jill’s little visit. And we are so excited to be asking that question with them as we reflect on these words from Scripture, “and My house shall be a house of prayer.”

Prayer Space Dundee began asking that question a while ago and the answer is beginning to take shape, though it is still very much like a part-finished picture on an artist’s canvas.
Again, what was beautiful to see was the interweaving of relationships – some new, some old but each with a sense of call into this network of relationships known as Prayer Space Dundee.
Some are local church leaders, some are in the medical profession, some are involved in schools, some in counselling and play/drama/art therapy, some in social enterprises – like providing jobs for people while teaching them to bake bread. Sound like a modern day monastic community? You wouldn’t be alone in thinking that! And to top it off, they meet for prayer in the wee chapel of Dundee’s old Franciscan Friary!
As we prayed and ate together, God’s presence and delight was palpable, as well as an overwhelming sense of hope and expectation for Dundee.
While waiting for the train that would carry us back home, our attention was captured by a wee paper with the words, “The Dawn of A New Era for Dundee” – we couldn’t agree more!
And we are convinced that this dawn has been brought about by the fervent, persistent, unified prayers of the ordinary, everyday saints of Dundee as they have responded to His call and allowed Him to begin building them into His House of Prayer.

*If you would like to connect with one of these communities, they would be happy to connect with you. For Prayer Space Dundee simply go to their webpage prayerspacedundee.org and for Irvine contact us here at 24-7 Prayer Scotland we will connect you.