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ACW and World Day of Prayer

In just under two weeks time, Christians around the globe will gather for the 2022 World

Day of Prayer (WDP) service on Friday 4 March. This year’s host countries are England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and the theme is:

‘I know the plans I have for you.’

The theme is God’s promise to his people in exile in Babylon, found in the book of Jeremiah 29:11.

`For I know the plans I have for you’, declares the LORD.

`Plans to prosper you and not harm you,

Plans to give you hope and a future.'


The annual service is always gazetted for the first Friday in March, even though occasionally some groups need to hold their service on another day that is still close to this date. Various resources are published for this event by the World Day of Prayer International Committee (WDPIC) and should be available from your local WDP Committee. If you have not been able to access these resources, you will find electronic copies on the Australian WDP website at https://www.worlddayofprayeraustralia.org/free-resources/#


 

Today, our blog post is compiled from two snippets of information I found that demonstrate the World Day of Prayer was part of the programs for both Australian Church Women (ACW) and the Asian Church Women’s Conference (ACWC) in their early years.


We're travelling back to July 1968 when an international World Day of Prayer meeting was convened in Vallingby, Sweden, to birth an international committee for the World Day of Prayer [https://www.acw.org.au/post/world-day-of-prayer-and-rathi-selvaratnam]. A subcommittee was formed to address the administrative operations for the newly elected WDP International Committee, and they recommended that the first meeting of the new international committee be held around the time of the next ACWC assembly in 1970. This was agreed to by those who attended the meeting.


After the election of the new WDP International Committee, some changes were necessary before the 1970 meeting. Two women whose names are familiar to me – Margarethe Lie Dharma from Indonesia and Eileen Dingle from Queensland – became alternate members of the Executive Committee.


One of the elected members was unable to take up her nominated position on the Executive Committee, and she was replaced by Rev. Margarethe Lie Dharma who was one of the founding members of the ACWC.


Later, another member of the executive had to resign because she moved to the United States. Her replacement was Eileen Dingle [https://www.acw.org.au/post/eileen-dingle]. Eileen attended the 1970 Asian Church Women’s Conference in Indonesia as an observer for Australian Church Women, and then she travelled to Bangkok, as a WDPIC executive member, for the World Day of Prayer meeting. Eileen was also President of the Queensland Unit of Australian Church Women and President of World Day of Prayer Queensland.

 

Prior to the establishment of the WDPIC, the members of ACW and the ACWC had been participating in World Day of Prayer. Australian Church Women has had a long association with the World Day of Prayer.

 

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This Herstory Blog of Australian Church Women Inc. tells the stories of the women and activities of this national Christian organisation that was founded in February 1965.

Stories that inspired and encouraged me to begin this blog and share their inspiration with you. Stories that need to be told so that the women of ACW can be honoured and celebrated for their achievements and experiences in local, national and international communities of faith. And, most importantly, stories that demonstrate being disciples of Jesus Christ firmly underpins all that Australian Church Women represents.