Global online Advent calendar opens the door to prayer

The online Advent calendar AdventWord, which draws together people’s prayers and meditations around a daily theme, is to operate again in the run-up to Christmas. AdventWord offers 23 meditations and images with an encouragement for people to share pictures and thoughts in response. Last year it created a social media community connecting over 100,000 people in prayer, with about 15,000 images being added across all platforms.

Now in its fourth year, the project was originally devised by the Society of St John the Evangelist. They have now handed it on to the Virginia Theological Seminary, while continuing to assist. The Anglican Communion Office is also continuing to support the initiative.

“The hope is to create a global prayer network, with images and meditations, stretching across countries and languages, as we enter into this holy season of preparation,” Sarah Stonesifer, Digital Missioner for Virginia Theological Seminary, said.

AdventWord begins on Sunday 3 December 2017. Images and meditations will be made available via email, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. During the 23 days of Advent, a daily email featuring the AdventWord of the day will go out at 5 am in the recipients own time-zone. Respondents are encouraged to share their responses to the meditations and images to the aggregated prayer walls within the advent calendar using social media and the hashtags #AdventWord and the word of the day.

The prayers will be drawn together online at adventword.org. For the first time, the themes for the day are being published in advance, to help people plan ahead and allow more time for creative responses.

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Daily AdventWord:
3 December #Awaken
4 December #Journey
5 December #Gather
6 December #Simplify
7 December #Heal
8 December #Mend
9 December #Focus
10 December #Prepare
11 December #Messenger
12 December #Watch
13 December #Voice
14 December #Wilderness
15 December #Trust
16 December #Among
17 December #Light
18 December #Dazzle
19 December #Open
20 December #Embrace
21 December #Renew
22 December #Greeting
23 December #Child
24 December #Believe
25 December #Celebrate