I just got back from the 24-7 Prayer Roundtable in Spain. Fantastic time. Really! One night we stayed up until 2:30am, chatting outside, laughing loudly, listening to Brian's depraved stories (pray for Brian), watching Star Wars . . haven't had such a fun night for ages. A lot of you are asking me exactly what was said and decided regarding 24-7 Prayer and their Boiler Rooms (monastic style churches). I would rather not comment, and just let the story and news unfold in its own time. Keep watching their web site, especially later this month when their new website comes out (opppps .. just let that one out, didn't I?)
Marcus from Germany brought this picture to show us. It was painted a long time ago to depict a prophetic image, when God was doing amazing things through the community that Count Zinzendorf saw populate his land at Hernhutt. In the picture, we saw unity in diversity, a strong flavor in what God is doing among the 24-7 Prayer movement. Marcus pointed out the black lady holding a white baby. This was very common in the days of the revival at Hernhutt.
It was a visit to this place that inspired Pete Grieg to get his community praying for a month. Interestingly, it was a meeting here in 2001 that kicked off another emerging church movement called Connect Europe.
At the Roundtable, there was a lot of conversation this kind of unity, about working with the Roman Catholic Church, who are also excited about starting 24-7 Prayer Rooms. Also good conversation about women in leadership and how we need to recognize what God is doing, and be sensitive to it.
Here are some more highlights and thoughts from the 2004 Roundtable . . .
April 2000 - I met Pete Grieg and was really excited to hear what God was doing. Prayer Rooms were popping up all over the world, beyond the control of Pete and his small team.
August 2000 - I went down to Chichester and Pete walked me around the original prayer room. (Remind me to put that video online soon)
November 2001 - I attended the 24-7 Roundtable in Chichester,
November 2002 - I was at the Roundtable in Malaga, Spain. i blogged that there were 2 Boiler Rooms and they were working on some Rules for the monasteries. Pete Grieg was excited about turning a pub into a prayer room.
2003 - Roundtable in Amsterdam - I couldn't go to this one, but there were like 100 people.
2004 - Roundtable just north of Barcelona. Numbers limited to 30-40 so that we could discuss issues. A larger group (International Leaders) are meeting right now in Barcelona as I write this.
The movement is really taking off. This summer, there were more prayer rooms in Africa than in UK. People had come from all over the world for this Roundtable - Canada, USA, Mexico, Sweden . . . But what was really interesting was the out-growth of monastic style church called Boiler Rooms. Pete was clear that although there are Boiler Room style churches emerging from the 24-- Prayer Rooms, and that we all are excited about the new wave of churches being started, that it was not mandatory nor expected that anyone who starts a Prayer Room will be expected to start a church out of it. Good call, Pete! There are currently dozens of cities that want a Boiler Room church. I expect this to really take off, and to take off very quickly.
(Carl Tinnion and Pete Grieg, probably watching funny flash animations during the teaching, who knows??) What amazes me is that this movement runs on very little financing. Quite a pathetic amount, actually. Not enough, for example, to go and visit all these new prayer rooms and churches in Africa. They could really use some money to hold some training events around the world. This would help consolidate the movement and add more continuity. Still, things are moving ahead anyway. I taught on how to start churches without any money, and about church planting movements. I wrote a brief paper on emerging culture, that was put with 2 other papers by Floyd McClung and Roger Ellis. They will come out next year in book form.
So . . . keep your eye on this movement and lets see what God does!