Praise Reports


British Isles


Praise Reports

Princess Beatrice gives birth to a girl

On 18 September the Queen’s granddaughter, Princess Beatrice, gave birth to a baby girl weighing 6lb 2oz, at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital. Buckingham Palace said the princess and her daughter were doing well, and the baby’s grandparents and great-grandparents were ‘delighted’. The baby will be 11th in line to the throne and the Queen’s 12th great-grandchild. Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, the baby’s father, will pass on the official Italian title of Nobile Donna, which translates to Noble Woman.

Praise: God for the safe delivery; may God bless her and the royal family. (Jeremiah 29:11)

Youth groups grew into a church

A missionary planted a church in Nicholas Lebey’s village in Ghana. Now Nicholas has done the same in south-east London and Bradford as a pioneer evangelist. In 2013 he came to Woolwich, and planted a church with young people who had no former connection with church. He launched a Friday night youth club, a Tuesday night gathering, a Youth Alpha course and from this, a youth congregation which met on a Sunday evening. He also worked on a local estate, running football and lunch clubs focussed on getting young people off the streets and into a place where they could belong, connect with friends, and build relationships, Nicholas was able to mentor them, with Christian teaching. ‘As relationships deepened, we began to see a community emerge. It came from the young people themselves. I believe we don’t do things for people, we do it with them’, explained Nicholas.

Praise: God for Nicholas and all the pioneer evangelists who work with the unchurched and help them find faith, grow in it, and become followers of Jesus. (Isaiah 41:10)

Praise Reports

Bishop to the military prays for peace

Rt Rev Hugh Nelson is the new Bishop to the Armed Forces: he was formally licensed by Justin Welby on 20 September. This role will be in addition to his work as Bishop of St Germans in the Diocese of Truro. Speaking to Premier Christian Radio, Bishop Hugh said, ‘One of the commitments that I make as Bishop to the Forces is that I will pray for two things, every single day while I’m in this post. One is that the day will come and come as soon as possible when there’s no need for any armed forces, when peace breaks out and the kingdom of God fully arrives. And in the meantime, I will continue to pray every single day for our men and women who are out there on the frontline trying to keep peace and justice in the name of this country.’

Pray: for Bishop Hugh’s ministry to be a blessing to military Christians and non-Christians alike. Pray with him for peace to break out and, in the meantime, for those who are on the frontlines. (Matthew 24:6)

Gas crisis: CO2 shortage

Rising gas prices caused fertiliser factories to close on 20 September, cutting 60% of the supply of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the food and drinks industry. There were warnings of supermarket shortages, because CO2 extends the shelf life of packaged fresh foods and keeps transported food fresh as dry ice. There were also concerns that the UK may have to close its six advanced gas-cooled nuclear reactors which use CO2 . Big meat suppliers were prioritising how they use CO2 as they had just three days’ supply, while supermarkets had ‘limited stock’ of frozen items. On 22 September the Government promised to give tens of millions of pounds to restart production of CO2 at a fertiliser factory for three weeks ‘whilst the market adapts to global prices’. There will be a cap to the overall cost. The Food and Drink Federation said shortages may be felt through to the end of the year.

Pray: for the short-term arrangement to prevent supermarket panic buying and for agriculture, business, and the Cabinet Office to develop a longer-term solution. (Proverbs 12:15)

Gas crisis: energy firms close down

Avro Energy and Green Supplier collapsed on 22 September, and the sector’s regulator warned ‘well above’ hundreds of thousands of customers will have to be moved to new suppliers whose tariff may be more expensive. Avro Energy has 580,000 customers, Green Supplier 250,000. Customers will still receive energy while a new supplier is appointed. They are the latest providers to go bust following a sharp rise in wholesale gas prices. Ofgem warned the price rise was ‘something not seen before’ and more firms would fold. A six-fold rise in wholesale gas prices since last year meant several domestic energy suppliers had hit financial trouble. The Joseph Rowntree Foundation charity warned that millions of low-income households will face a squeeze on their finances from October, when energy companies will be allowed to lift the maximum amount they charge for gas and electricity by as much as 12%. Also from next month, Universal Credit claimants will lose £20 a week.

Pray: for this sector to bring about changes that will help the millions of low-income families who are now anxious about how they are to make ends meet from next month. (Philippians 4:19)

Justin Welby asks PM to pay war widows their ‘rightful pension’

The Archbishop of Canterbury has called on the government to ‘put right’ the fact that a group of war widows who remarried after the deaths of their husbands, are not allowed to claim their pensions. He said, ‘One of the Bible’s strongest, clearest, and most often repeated commands is to care for and honour the widow. The plight of the war widows who are not able to receive their military pensions is a very great wrong. To find love and happiness again after such loss and heartbreak only to be denied their rightful pension, and for many their means of living, leaves them in a cruel and unjustifiable situation and facing unbearable decisions. It must be put right.’ In 2015, changes were introduced and all who qualified would receive the pension for life. But the changes were not applied retrospectively, leaving around 200 women unable to claim the money.

Pray: for the 2015 decision to be reversed so that all war widows are provided for. (1 Timothy 5:8)

Discrimination in schools

Data uncovered by an alliance of over fifty charities shows that black Caribbean girls were permanently excluded from school at twice the rate of white British girls during the academic year 2019-20. The rate tripled for mixed white and Caribbean girls, and was four times higher for girls from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities. While boys continue to face higher rates of exclusion overall, the report notes that the number of girls excluded has risen by 66% over the last five years, compared with a 32% increase among boys during the same time period. The report notes how females are excluded from education after experiencing unaddressed sexual harassment and abuse, poor mental health, and racism. Negative stereotypes attached to black girls and those from minority ethnic backgrounds play a critical role in their exclusion.

Pray: for the Department for Education to take action on racial disparities in this report. (John 7:24)

Two data breaches imperil Afghans

Two defence ministry blunders in one week have put Afghan lives at risk. The UK said not everyone eligible for relocation could be evacuated before forces left Afghanistan, but the Ministry of Defence (MoD) would help those left behind to leave. The first data breach was an email containing addresses of 250 Afghan interpreters mistakenly copied by the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy team (ARAP) pledging assistance with their relocation to the UK. Some of the addresses showed people’s names and associated profile pictures. The mistake could cost lives. Following that error, officials sent another message 30 minutes later advising the recipients to change their email addresses. The second blunder saw MoD officials mistakenly copy 55 people into an email, making their details visible to all recipients. The defence secretary instigated an investigation into data handling, and one official has been suspended pending an outcome.

Pray: for the safety of the Afghans who have now been put at risk, and for more shrewd and secure processes to be put in place for handling data and correspondence. (2 Thessalonians 3:3)

Fraudsters steal £753.9 million in six months

Fraudsters stole over £4 million a day from people in the first half of the year, a rise of 31% from the same period in 2020, as criminals increased authorised push-payment (APP) fraud. Through scam calls, texts and emails, as well as fake websites, APP fraud sees criminals con victims into handing over personal data which is then used to trick them into authorising payments to an account belonging to the thieves. The report detected criminals tried taking a further £736 million but improved banking security systems prevented those funds from being moved out of victims’ accounts into the fraudster’s account. UK Finance warned, ‘Fraud is now a national security threat and banking and finance industries are calling for government-coordinated action across all sectors.’

Pray: for the call to tackle this issue to be actioned successfully so that financial fraudsters are caught and prosecuted and justice is achieved. (Psalm 35:10)

Praise Reports

Spain: Canary Islands volcano eruption

A volcano on the island of La Palma began erupting on 19 September, sending streams of lava and plumes of smoke and ash into the air. A small earthquake preceded the eruption, causing thousands of residents to flee their homes and prompting authorities to begin evacuating the infirm and farm animals from nearby villages before the volcanic activity. By 20 September three streams of lava were pouring down towards the sea, moving at 2,300 feet per hour, and 6,000 people had evacuated their homes. Two days later new cracks started spewing more lava and four earthquakes shook the area. Families raced to save what they could from their homes in a two-hour window granted by emergency workers. The lava had already destroyed 300 homes, and overwhelmed roads, farms, a school, and swimming pools. Pray for those in temporary shelters not knowing when they will return home, fearing their homes might be engulfed by lava. Seismologists played down the attendant risk of an Atlantic tsunami.

Pray: for the residents facing the dangers of more earthquakes, new lava flows, toxic gases and acid rain when the lava meets the coastal waters plus volcanic ash. (Psalm 32:7)

Greece: migrants moved to EU-funded ‘controlled’ camps

Officials have started moving asylum-seekers to a new migrant camp on the island of Samos, Zervou, despite activists complaining that access controls are too harsh. A double barbed-wire fence surrounds the camp with surveillance cameras, X-ray scanners and magnetic doors. During the 2015/16 migrant crisis the previous camp on Samos sheltered 7,000 asylum-seekers despite its capacity being just 680. Campaigners had long denounced conditions there as deplorable. On 20 September at Zervou’s entrance police lined up the first residents, checking for weapons or dangerous objects. Asylum personnel handed out bedsheets and showed the migrants how to use the gate’s magnetic entry cards. The new Samos facility is the first of several such camps on five Greek islands created with EU funds. All the ‘closed controlled’ camps can only be entered via fingerprint scans and electronic badges. Gates will remain closed at night and disciplinary measures await those who return after 8 pm.

Pray: for the new camps to be safe with compassionate humanitarian care. (Psalm 32:7)

Praise Reports

Brazil: Christian growth

Brazil has one of the largest Christian populations in the world; 91% say they are a ‘Christian’ of some form. The Kingdom of God has exploded in Brazil since 1960 as the nation has been saturated with truth in and through Jesus Christ. Jesus said (Luke 12:48), ‘To whom much is given, from them much is required’, and Brazil has certainly been given much from God. The Church has become a strong mission-sending organisation in one generation. Today, God desires it to go to a new level of seeing mission mobilisation emphasised in every local ministry so that every believer contributes to the fulfillment of the Great Commission. The Brazilian Church is known as a praying Church; pray for a massive prayer movement across the churches and denominations emphasising intercession for an explosion of church-planting, leading towards communal movements to Christ among all unreached people groups.

Pray: for the Brazilian Church to continue to grow and trigger the Great Commission locally and globally. (Acts 2:47)

A turning point for humanity

Boris Johnson, speaking to the UN, told them that it is time for humanity to grow up, and the COP26 summit leaders in November must be the turning point. He warned that global temperature rises were already inevitable, but called on his fellow leaders to commit to major changes to curb further warming in four areas – coal, cars, cash, and trees. He added, ‘Countries must take responsibility for the destruction we are inflicting, not just upon our planet but ourselves. It’s time for humanity to grow up.’ Mr Johnson praised China’s pledge to stop building coal-fired energy plants abroad and called on them to also end domestic coal use (they produce 28% of global greenhouse gas emissions). The Prime Minister made a series of calls for action to his fellow leaders, adding, ‘We have the tools for a green industrial revolution, but time is desperately short.’

Pray: for every country to recognise the gravity of what they have done and pledge collectively to achieve carbon neutrality – or net zero – by the middle of the century. (Jeremiah 2:7)

Iraq: resurgence of IS, Iranian Influence

Many believe Iran and IS are ready to jump in and fill the void as Joe Biden withdraws troops from Iraq by the end of this year. They are emboldened because of the fall of Afghanistan. IS had apparently been absolutely defeated in Iraq, but it restarted in 2019. In the last three months they have been aggressively reorganising, setting up checkpoints and attacking Christians and others around the Kirkuk area. Iran is also showing its infiltration and its might against American interests inside Iraq. Meanwhile, the prime minister has encouraged over one million Christians who fled in recent years to return. Christians still in Iraq warn that there has not been sufficient change to guarantee safety. Open Doors questioned the wisdom of the government statement, saying, ‘How can Christians return to Iraq while many are still living in undignified conditions and facing persecution from Sunni and Shia fundamentalists?’ See

Pray: for Iraq’s government to increase job opportunities, improve infrastructure, and guarantee security for Christians at home so that those who return will do so safely. (Proverbs 11:14)

Iran: Christians request prayer

On 5 September intelligence agents in Rasht arrested Christian converts Ayoub Morteza, Morteza Mashhoudkari and Ahmad Sarparast and interrogated them. Ayoub was able to contact his family from there. The prosecutor refused to grant them bail and Morteza and Ahmad were transferred to Lakan Prison on 18 September. Iranian intelligence said that Ayoub had also been taken to the prison, but Morteza and Ahmad said he was not there. Please pray that Ayoub’s present situation will quickly become known and that his family will no longer be worried about him. May God encourage and strengthen these men and grant them peace during their imprisonment. Pray also that engaging in Christian activities and meeting with fellow-Christians should no longer be considered a crime in Iran.

Pray: for Iran to cease victimising Christian converts and other religious communities. (Psalm 103:6)

USA/Mexico border crisis escalates

Flights carrying Haitian migrants from the US back to their homeland continue daily. The ongoing mass expulsion comes in response to a growing humanitarian crisis at the US/Mexico border. Over 12,000 migrants, mainly from Haiti, camped under a bridge in Del Rio, Texas, after wading across the Rio Grande from Mexico. Activity at the border has increased significantly in recent years. Border agents stopped nearly 200,000 people last month, a significant increase from the 50,684 arrests in 2019. UN officials say almost a million people from El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti and Honduras have fled to Mexico. Mexico may top 100,000 new asylum claims this year, breaking a new record. Recently a federal judge decided officials could not use Title 42 law to deport migrant families from the US to Mexico. Lawyers serving the Biden administration immediately appealed the ruling. Mission Cry is sending 25,000 Spanish Bibles to migrants all over Mexico and hope to reach 2 million people.

Pray: for enough missionaries and money to be raised to send millions of Bibles and Bible teachers to Spanish-speaking people in South and Central America. (1 Peter 4:10)

China: crackdown on Christians increasing

For many years we have interceded for the persecuted Christians in China. A significant trend in the past year has been for even more church raids: according to an International Christian Concern report, ‘not only were churches shut down or demolished, but pastors and Christians are regularly arrested.’ Open Doors estimates that there are 97 million Christians in China, many of them in unregistered underground house churches and therefore considered to be ‘illegal’. Christians are not the only religious minority facing persecution; between 1 and 3 million Uyghur and other ethnic Muslims have been put in internment camps where they are taught to fall in line with the CCP. In January, the US state department described China’s treatment of Uyghurs as a ‘genocide.’ China has also reportedly violated the rights of Falun Gong practitioners and Tibetan Buddhists.

Pray: for the nations to recognise the growing violent persecution of non-communists and use geo-political power to stem the tyranny. (Amos 5:24)

Australia: earthquakes and violent protests

One of Australia’s biggest earthquakes on record (magnitude 6.0) struck near Melbourne, damaging buildings. It was felt 500 miles away in Adelaide and Sydney 600 miles to the north. Over half of Australia’s 25 million population lives in the southeast in an area from Adelaide to Melbourne to Sydney. Quakes are relatively unusual in this area. The shaking and damage did not stop hundreds of angry demonstrators from holding a protest across Melbourne against a vaccine mandate for construction workers (there are more Covid cases in the construction sector than there are Covid patients in the whole hospital system). Police fired rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse the demonstrations before making arrests. Earlier in the day the protesters had marched through the city centre, chanting their opposition to the mandate. See

Pray: for peace to replace despair for those affected by the earthquake, and for wise decisions to be made by the construction sector so that cases of Covid are reduced. (Hebrews 13:17)

Praise Reports
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