Prayer week unites Philippine Christian Churches

Tackling social issues brings various denominations together

Prayer week unites Philippine Christian Churches
Participants of the ecumenical prayer week perform a ‘unity dance’
Maurice Malanes, Baguio City, Philippines

January 25, 2011

A weeklong prayer celebration united Christian Churches in the northern Philippine city of Baguio.

Christian leaders noted that more groups participated in the just concluded global week of prayer for Christian unity held in the city last week.

“We are definitely inspired by the wider participation of Christian groups and fellowships,” said Reylita Calimlim, secretary of the Baguio-Benguet Ecumenical Group.

Calimlim, a medical doctor who advocates natural family planning and an active local leader of the Focolare Movement, took time reminding Church leaders about the schedule and venue of the activity participated in by various Churches that took turns hosting early evening Masses and services.

After every Mass or worship service, the host Church prepares light meals, which helped strengthen the fellowship of participants, said Calimlim, a Catholic.

The Week of prayer started in 1998 and was participated by the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church, the United Church of Christ in the Philippines, the Episcopal (Anglican) Church of the Philippines, the Lutheran Church, and the Philippine Military Academy Evangelical Church.

The group have taken up social issues and concerns during discussions, such as anti-gambling drives and voters’ education toward clean, honest and peaceful elections.

“These social issues have drawn more Christian organizations, including the evangelical and Pentecostal groups,” said Calimlim.

From six participating churches in 1998, Calimlim said 15 Christian Churches and fellowships actively participated during the activity last week.

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