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Hundreds of thousands of prayer cards have been delivered to churches and cathedrals in England and Wales – including Wakefield Cathedral – to help people find ‘comfort and hope in a world of uncertainty’.
The free prayer cards are just one strand of the new Explore Project, with contributions and endorsements from church leaders, including the Archbishops of Canterbury and York and the Bishop of London.
The project has been shaped by people’s experience of the pandemic and is designed to help churches and cathedrals signpost and help people talk to God with prayers to express grief, loneliness, fear, worry or simply say thank you.
The Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, said: “The Explore Project is offering resources to churches and cathedrals to help people engage with what our church buildings exist for and what our faith is all about.
“Tourists can become pilgrims as they encounter the person of Jesus Christ and journeys of faith are begun or renewed.”
The project is a partnership between the Association of English Cathedrals, the Church of England’s Church Buildings Division and Mission teams, the National Churches Trust, and the Centre for the Study of Christianity & Culture at the University of York and has been informed by research conducted over the last eight years including over 5.5k responses to surveys undertaken during the Covid pandemic.
The Revd Prof Dee Dyas of the University of York led the project and said: “Research clearly shows that people of all faiths and none are interested in spiritual exploration, but people are often not sure if it is “OK” to talk to God about their own lives and needs. We are still seeing the impact of the pandemic in terms of greatly increased experience of grief, loneliness, and uncertainty about the future.’
“This project is intended to encourage people to find the words to talk to God in an easy, accessible way, and offer them a simple pathway to go on exploring.”
The project offers twelve different prayer cards which are on display in Wakefield Cathedral for people to use and take away with them.
Explore has been funded by the AllChurches Trust, The Jerusalem Trust, the Laing Family Trusts, and the Diocese of London.
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