Anglican Fellowship of Prayer
Partners in Prayer
Newsletter of the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer
Our Mission: The Anglican Fellowship of Prayer serves the church by encouraging, facilitating, and promoting the understanding and discipline of prayer in the Anglican Communion.
Mildred (1915-2005) and Whitney (1906-2007) Greene were very active leaders and teachers in the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer. The year before he died, Whitney arranged for the publication of several of Mildred's writings on prayer and the spiritual life: Stepping Stones to Christian Living (The Cheshire Press, NY), with a Foreword by the Very Reverend George L.W. Werner. Their daughter, Kelly Estes, has given us permission to print excerpts from the book. From the chapter called "Ask…Seek…Knock" (pp. 10,11):
Although adoration and thanksgiving are the highest forms of prayer, most
of us find a larger part of our prayer time spent in "asking prayers," intercession and petition….Not only is intercession asking God to handle the difficulties of another
but, more importantly, it is the placing of ourselves within God's will to be a channel
through which He can accomplish His purpose in the other person. It is the offering of
our imperfect love as the vehicle through which God can work His perfect love…
We must never hesitate to pray for concrete needs, as we see them…In time we may find that the actual need is different from what we originally thought it to be
but, if so, we are then given spiritual insight and guidance in how to continue praying for that person or situation…
In cases where we are uncertain of what we should pray for another, we should simply ask God to keep the person constantly aware of His loving presence, which is the greatest blessing one can receive…
The church needs our prayers, especially as preparations are made for General Convention in Anaheim July 8-15. AFP has committed to praying for the Convention, especially on Wednesdays (the day of the week convention starts). You can find a link to a Litany for the Church on the AFP website (www.afp.org). We also suggest the prayer on the back of this newsletter, and others available on our website.
Pat Hayes still needs to hear from you if you would be interested in being a Diocesan Representative! She is happy to announce that Carla Rueckert-McCarty, from Anchorage, Kentucky has volunteered to represent the Diocese of Kentucky. We need representatives in all dioceses. Pat's e-mail address is <firstname.lastname@example.org>. If you are a bishop in a diocese which does not have an AFP Representative, we hope you will help us find someone in your diocese who would be willing and able to carry out this ministry.
From our AFP US Council president: as always we appreciate your prayers for this ministry that it might be a Christian witness to a hurting world, and if you are so moved, we would appreciate any donation you might be able to make to support the ministry, and the publication and mailing of the newsletters. Please send to AFP,
1106 Mansfield Avenue, Indiana, PA 15701.
PRESIDENT'S LETTER: REFLECTIONS ON PENTECOST
On a recent return trip from a visit to Belgium and France my wife, Nancy, and I noticed that the
pilot and senior flight attendant made announcements first in English and then in French. In thinking about Pentecost I realize the Lord did the same sort of thing except that there was no need for a second translation. He did it direct. Everyone heard what was said in his own language at the same time. That's amazing. First, God separated everyone at Babel by causing languages to be so different that people could not understand each other. Thus they were dispersed. Now at Pentecost God caused people from different countries who spoke different languages and dialects to be understood as if they were speaking in each person's own language. They were, in effect, brought together because of the common message which they all understood.
During the forty days after Jesus' resurrection He appeared to the apostles and disciples many times and taught them of the Kingdom of God (Acts 1:3). All during that time the apostles, Mary, and the others were spreading the word about the resurrection and more disciples were added to the group. Then one day when they were all together with Jesus on Mt. Olivet He ascended from their sight into heaven (Acts 1:9). They returned from Olivet rejoicing because of what they saw and about what Jesus said about receiving the promise of the Father. After electing Matthias as a replacement for Judas they spent the following ten days in prayer with great expectation. Then it happened. Mighty winds and tongues of fire entered the room where they were. Acts implies that there were 120 of them present, not just the twelve who received that promise of the Father and were baptized by the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:15). That's when they began speaking in different tongues. They probably then rushed out to the temple where all of the visitors were and caused quite a stir. Each one was speaking in their Galilean tongue and the visitors understood them to be speaking in their own language (Acts 2:8). I can't imagine what it must have been like to be in that crowd hearing someone out of the 120 people who were talking speak to you in your own language. These visitors were devout people who had come to Jerusalem as prescribed, on one of the high holy days of the year, the Feast of Weeks, seven weeks after Passover or--as it is called in Greek, Pentecost (50 days). They had come from many different countries and areas and were amazed at what was happening (Acts 2:9). However, there were people in the crowd who thought maybe the group speaking might have been drunk, but then Peter called everyone to attention and told them that it was only nine o'clock in the morning so they could not be drunk. What they were hearing was foretold by Joel, the prophet (Acts 2: 16-21). What a sermon that must have been! There was an altar call with a great response: what must we do? (Acts 2:37). 3000 people came forward to be baptized, and the church was born.
This was not just a one-time show to get peoples' attention. This was for real and for the long haul. This visitation by the Holy Spirit was for people to receive power to be witnesses for Christ and for the Kingdom of God. We read about the acts of the apostles, but I am convinced that a book could have been written about the acts of the disciples. Three thousand people is an amazing number from which to start a church, and with such fast growth, those 3000 through the power of the Holy Spirit must have been, along with the 12, great evangelists for Christ.
This is a wonderful story about what the Holy Spirit can do in peoples' lives. He can do the same thing in our lives if we ask him to: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, so fill my life that the life I live will be such that people will ask, "What makes you do this?", and I can tell them about Jesus and the Kingdom of God through the power given me by the Holy Spirit. Amen.
William C. Williams
President, U.S. Council
Reminder: Bishop Hultstrand's The Praying Church is available on our website.
FOR THE UNITY OF THE CHURCH
Our God, amidst the deplorable divisions of your church,
Let us never widen its breaches, but give us universal charity
To all who are called by your name. Deliver us from the sins
And errors, the schisms and heresies of the age. Give us grace
Daily to pray for the peace of your church, and earnestly to
Seek it and to excite all we can to praise and love you,
Through Jesus Christ our Lord, our one Savior and Redeemer.
--Thomas Ken (1637-1711)
Pres.: Dr. William C. Williams Rec. Sec'y.: Mrs. Mary Leberknight Corr. Sec'y: Mrs. Celinda Scott, 1106 Mansfield Ave., Indiana, PA 15701 < email@example.com> 724-463-6436 . Other Board Members: the Rev. Paula Claire Hall, Mr. Robert Barry, and Mrs. Patricia Hayes