Prayer and the Mission of the PCA
In the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), we often articulate that our mission as a denomination is to be “Faithful to the Scriptures, True to the Reformed Faith, and Obedient to the Great Commission.” But underneath this lies an important assumption: that we are a denomination characterized by dependence on God through prayer.
- To be faithful to the Scriptures means we “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17).
- To be true to the Reformed faith means we pray to the One who has “foreordained whatsoever comes to pass” (WSC 7).
- To be obedient to the Great Commission is in part to “pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest” (Matt. 9:38).
The mission of the PCA is a mission that requires us to be a praying denomination.
As the first Moderator of the PCA’s first General Assembly, Ruling Elder Jack Williamson made the following statement 50 years ago,
“We must undergird this Church with a great outgoing of prayer. We know it is far easier to fight than it is to pray. But our battle is ‘not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world against spiritual wickedness in high places.’ Only fervent prayer will prevail.”
This dear church father’s words serve as an important reminder of the priority of prayer for our health as a denomination.
Three years ago, a pandemic interrupted our normal church life and ability to gather regularly. During those first few months, the Administrative Committee organized a month of prayer including a thirty-day prayer guide. This prayer guide continues to be one of the most visited pages on our website.
As we celebrate our golden jubilee as a denomination, it is fitting that we renew our commitment to prayer. The 50th Celebration Committee has gathered volunteers from across the country and worked with the Committee on Discipleship Ministries to publish a prayer calendar for the entire year. This beautiful calendar provides practical ways you and your family can pray for our churches, committees and agencies.
On Sunday, May 21, we will mark the 50th anniversary of the Convocation of Sessions that first resolved to form the PCA with a special day of prayer. Our hope is to unite our voices as a denomination to praise God for the women and men whose courage and commitment to the Scriptures led to the founding of the PCA while also pleading to God for his favor on our labors moving forward. You can visit pca50.org to find ways for you and your congregation to join in prayer on this special occasion.
At the Administrative Committee, our goal is to facilitate the unity, purity, and mission of the PCA. We believe all this requires a constant dependence on Christ and his work on our behalf. To that end, please join us in prayer as we provide practical ways for our denomination as a whole to approach God’s gracious throne through the intercession of Jesus Christ and the advocacy of the Holy Spirit. If you would like to receive the 50th Anniversary Prayer Calendar to aid your prayers, you can order it here.
The work of the Administrative Committee depends on the generosity of individuals and churches who want to see the unity, purity, and mission of the PCA strengthened. Please consider a gift to the Administrative Committee in addition to your ongoing prayer for our denomination.