Prayer and fasting during lockdown

Dear Parishioners

I hope that if last Thursday was your first experience of fasting that it was not too much of a burden.  Can I encourage you to continue (obviously not if under medical supervision or recommendations) on this coming Thursday?

Also I have just sent out an email on the Itchen List encouraging the whole community to pray at 6pm on every Thursday during the lockdown.  I have asked the Churchwardens to organise for the bell of each village church to be tolled at 6pm to remind everyone to pray and Theo had a good idea about us joining in as well by ringing a hand bell at our doors as well.  I have passed on this article before by Graham Tomlin but if you have not read it yet can I suggest that you please do so.

Prayer is really important in moments of crisis – we can think of the King calling the nation to pray during the Dunkirk evacuation.  What Graham does not mention in his article is that subsequent research has shown (Five Days in London May 1940 by John Lukas) that during the week before the Sunday day of prayer that Churchill was equivocating on whether to follow Halifax’s lead and surrender.  By the Tuesday the week after the day of prayer he changed his view.  The rest is history.  Prayer makes a colossal difference at moments of great crisis.  We need to play our part in the crisis that our nation faces today.



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