*** DEBUG START ***
*** DEBUG END ***

Bear prayers

by
25 July 2014

THE idea came from Canada. When Canon Adrian Daffern spent part of his sabbatical in Montreal last year, he learned at St Paul's, South Shore, how successful was their Prayer Bear ministry.

"Members of the local community donate unwanted teddies to the church," he says. "They are cleaned up and repaired and have a prayer tied round their necks with some contact details from the church. People then take the bears to people who are lonely, sad, or ill."

He brought a prayer bear back to Woodstock, where he is Team Rector in

Oxford diocese, as an idea worth a try, and, when he gave a presentation about his time in Canada to members of his church of St Mary Magdalene, he talked about the prayer bears.

Afterwards, two of the congregation approached him to say they were interested in taking up the idea; so the initiative started, and bears began to arrive. They were cleaned, and made ready, and the prayers attached to them were short, simple phrases, or verses from the Psalms.

"Joe and Sandy (above) have done a wonderful job," Canon Daffern says. "At first, I think people were quite bemused; but now we can't keep up with the demand. People take one of the bears with them on hospital visits, sick communions, or to folks who don't get out much; it's wonderful to see the joy they bring, and with people of all ages.

"It's a tangible sign of our love and concern, and we're hearing some lovely stories from people about how much comfort, and even healing, is brought by the gift of one of these special teddies."

Browse Church and Charity jobs on the Church Times jobsite

Forthcoming Events

 

Church Times/RSCM:

Festival of Faith and Music

26 - 28 April 2024

See the full programme on the festival website. 

Early bird tickets available

 

Intercultural Church for a Multicultural World

28 May 2024

A Church Times/Church House Publishing webinar

Tickets are FREE

 

Church Times/Modern Church:

A Political Faith?

Monday 3 June 2024

This panel will explore where Christians have come to in terms of political power and ask, where should we go next?

Online tickets available

 

Church Times/Modern Church:

Participating in Democracy

Monday 10 June 2024

This panel will explore the power of voting, and power beyond voting.

Online tickets available

 

Green Church Awards

Closing date: 30 June 2024

Read more details about the awards

 

Welcome to the Church Times

 

To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)