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/ 2 June 2017

Archbishop of Canterbury visits St John’s Hoxton in week of 24-7 prayer

Archbishop of Canterbury at St John Hoxton

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, and his wife Caroline, have paid a flying visit to St John’s Hoxton as the church continues its week-long 24-7 wave of prayer.

Members of St John’s Hoxton have committed to holding 168 hours of continuous prayer and worship for the week running up to Pentecost Sunday. The initiative is part of thy Kingdom Come – an international prayer initiative led by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York. The aim is to encourage Christians up and down the country to be mobilised in prayer for our neighbourhoods and our nation.

Following the visit, the Archbishop tweeted that it was a great joy to pray with members of St John’s.

The Revd Graham Hunter, Vicar at St John’s, commented:

“It was a huge privilege to welcome Justin and Caroline to be with us. Our prayers were particularly focused on praying for growth in our church congregation and our children and youth ministers as our church has a special focus on ministry among young people.”

The visit comes as St John’s prepares to launch two new Sunday morning services to accommodate the growing membership of the church. Instead of one service at 10.30, there will now be two services, at 9.30 and 11.30, with children’s groups and Holy Communion at both. A cafe will run between the services.

St John’s is at the heart of the community in Hoxton and home to a variety of community initiatives, from a drop-in social group for local people who are retired, out of work, or simply seeking companionship, to a venue for the Tech City Christians group. St John’s is an active supporter of the Hackney Foodbank and hosts a distribution centre in its crypt, which is staffed with volunteers from the church. During 2017, the church is preparing the way for a major redevelopment project to allow it to do even more for its congregation and the local area.

As part of Thy Kingdom Come, London will be hosting a Beacon service at St Paul’s Cathedral on 3 June that will see Matt Redman, the Grammy award winning songwriter, Tolu Agbelusi, the poet and playwright, and Guvna B, the MOBO award winning Christian rap artist join The Rt Revd Ric Thorpe, Bishop of Islington, and the Venerable Liz Adekunle, Archdeacon of Hackney, for a passionate, and uplifting evening of prayer. The beacon event at St Paul’s Cathedral on 3 June will start at 7.30pm. Tickets can be reserved via Eventbrite, which will guarantee a seat. Unreserved tickets, on a first come, first served basis, will be available when the Cathedral doors open at 6.30pm.

Main image, from l-r: Sara Hunter, the Revd Graham Hunter, Tanya Whitfield, ++Justin, Bosede Owa, Freya Bradley (Stepney Intern / CEMES), Caleb Hunter, Ruth Cant (Children’s Minister), Julian Powell (Youth Minister – crouching), Deiondre Whitfield, Claire Reay, Vera Kesewah, Caroline Welby.

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