Blessings of International Women's Day of Prayer

Blessings of International Women's Day of Prayer

Sharon Platt-McDonald BUC Director for Women's Ministries, Health Ministries & Adventist Community Services

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Our world Church designated the first Sabbath of March as International Women's Day of Prayer. This annual notification is not just another 'must-do' event on our church calendar but an opportunity to gain fresh insights into the power of prayer, reflect on our personal prayer life, and share the wonderful testimonies resulting from our intercessions.

The theme for International Women's Day of Prayer 2024 and its resource package, Ignite Your Prayer Life, was written by Linda Mei Lin Koh, EdD, the recently retired director of General Conference Children's Ministries.

Personal reflections

I invited women across the British Union to share their reflections on the prayer materials.

Sis Margareth Mukisa, Scottish Mission Women's Ministries Sponsor, stated:

"As we reflect on this year's theme, Ignite Your Prayer Life, we are reminded of the power and importance of prayer in our spiritual journey. The prayer materials provided have inspired and guided us, helping us deepen our connection with the divine and cultivate a more meaningful prayer life. The theme has encouraged us to prioritise prayer in our daily routine and seek solace, strength, and wisdom through heartfelt communication with the Divine."

Women from the Irish Mission presented a video compilation as they shared their reflections on what prayer means to them. You can view the powerful collation of declarations here:

Sis Beulah Plunkett, North England Conference Women's Ministries Director, was the Sabbath speaker at the Pendeford Seventh-day Adventist church, organised by Sisters Norma Dockery, Patricia, Glendene and Crina. Beulah states:

"The theme from the GC was stunning: Ignite Your Prayer Life. It made us think more deeply about prayer all through the day. We started the day with a Prayer Breakfast. The text that we explored was 2 Chronicles 7:14, where we found that God wants to save us very much, and why? Because when He created us, He said we were 'very good' and He wants us to be 'very good' again. The sisters were amazed; they had not thought of God's reasoning for saving us in that way before. The fact that prayer was integral to our being redeemed and saved ignited our prayers.

"For the sermon, we looked at how integral prayer was in Revelation 8:1-6. Prayer signalled the end of probation when the seven angels were preparing to blow the seven trumpets. The prayers of the saints mingled with the incense that went up to God initiated the close of probation. Again, this ignited our prayers, and the call to the altar bore much fruit. Members and visitors came for prayer to ignite their prayer life and to be ignited by prayer.

"We ended the day by igniting our prayer lives through united prayers, which all took part in. The GC theme was both spiritual and practical, with all members talking to God and sharing and caring as Jesus did: women, men, and children."

South England Conference (SEC) Women's Ministries Director Elder Jacqueline Otokpa was invited to speak at the Lea Valley Seventh-day Adventist church in Tottenham. She commenced her address with a charge: 'Women for Christ, power to God; women for Christ, let's all lift Him'. She reports:

"God was indeed lifted. Throughout the service, the music department intertwined the segments with powerful renditions. I reminded believers of the urgent need to pray, emphasising that prayer is the key. Prayer draws us closer to God, enables us to resist temptation, improves our mental health, increases our thankfulness and develops a more Christ-like character in us as God's children."

The children's story reminded believers of the power of prayer and that with God, all things are possible. Miraculous things can happen. At the end of the service, Elder Otokpa appealed, emphasising that only God can truly draw us closer to Himself and that everyone needs always to seek Him.

Samantha Fessal – Welsh Mission Women's Ministries Sponsor, shared some reflections from 2 churches on what transpired during their Sabbath service. Newport church reports:

"The message was spiritually inspired as people within our congregation were touched by the Holy Spirit as we worshipped and prayed together. There was a unifying connection between the congregation, including the men and young people. We were reminded not to limit God in our prayers and that we can be honest with our God because He knows everything that goes on for us anyway. Through this year's theme for Women's International Day of Prayer, God has shown us again that when we pray, He is close to those that rend their hearts."

Hazel Kazeke, from Cardiff International church, expressed the blessings she received from the sermon presented by Pilira Zapita – "whose vibe and energy lifted the spirit of those present. It was an engaging and passionate presentation." The lessons drawn from the sermon revealed –

"How the ladies overcame adversity in a precarious situation. They stepped forward in faith. We were encouraged by the reality that God answers prayers if we approach the throne of grace in faith and humility."


Relating some of the testimonials from women in the Scottish Mission, Mukisa shares:

"Powerful testimonies were shared about how this year's theme has blessed and impacted our women profoundly. Many have expressed gratitude for the opportunity to delve deeper into their prayer lives and experience a renewed sense of spiritual growth and connection.

"Some shared how the prayer materials provided practical tools and strategies to enhance their prayer practice, leading to a greater sense of peace, clarity, and purpose.

"The theme Ignite Your Prayer Life has been a transformative journey for our group, inspiring us to nurture our relationship with the Divine and experience the transformative power of prayer in our daily lives. One of the participants bravely shared her testimony about her struggles with mental health and the profound impact it has had on her daily living. Another one shared how she struggled with her family when they came to this country and the overwhelming challenges they faced. However, praying and clinging to God, they survived and overcame their troubles."

Collating some of the SEC testimonials, Elder Jacqueline Otokpa shared the following:

"I wanted to take a moment to express my heartfelt gratitude for the opportunity to engage with the materials on Ignite Your Prayer Life for our Women's International Day of Prayer this year. The shared insights and practices have been a blessing to all women.

"As women, we often face numerous internal and external challenges. The materials shared made it evident that women need not only prayers but also counselling and support. Our souls carry wounds that can weigh heavy on our hearts and minds.

"Providing women a safe space to explore their pain, receive prayers and guidance, and work towards forgiveness is immensely important. We can begin the journey towards healing and restoration by tending to our wounded souls.

"I am grateful for the knowledge and tools gained through the Ignite Your Prayer Life materials. I look forward to continuing this transformative journey alongside fellow women seeking solace and spiritual growth.

Praise God for these uplifting testimonies.

If you missed the prayer materials for this year, you can access them at the following link: