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In a few weeks, almost 200 people from across North America will gather on the campus of Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Mich., for Synod 2024. As these delegates deliberate, discuss, and make decisions on matters related to the future of the Christian Reformed Church, they will be surrounded by and supported with prayer.

“In prayer, we humbly come before the God of the church and pray that the Father’s will would be done,” said Jon Hoekema, the CRCNA’s prayer shepherd. “It is before God’s throne that we realize that Jesus is head of the church, and together we belong to him. It is through prayer that the Holy Spirit mysteriously works. Without humbly seeking God’s face, without prayer, we work on in our own strength rather than being completely dependent upon the triune God to lead his church.”

This is the third synod Hoekema has supported through prayer ministry.

For Synod 2024, this prayer will come in many forms. A team of volunteers will gather on campus two days before synod begins. This pre-synod prayer gathering will include a prayer walk through all of the spaces that will be used by synodical delegates over the coming week.

Throughout the week of synod, an online prayer vigil will take place throughout the week of synod, for which volunteers anywhere around the world can sign up. They will be emailed a daily prayer guide with specific requests and praises.

Luann Sankey is one of 188 volunteers who participated in the vigil last year. “Prayer is essential around an event like synod, where the Holy Spirit's presence and guidance are vitally important to the denomination and its decision making,” she said.

As a delegate to Synod 2022, Sankey saw people praying and said she could feel the movement of the Spirit in her advisory committee, the assemblies for worship, and at the plenary sessions.

“Last year I was not going to synod, but I really cared about the work,” she said. “One way I could support synod was to be praying every morning for whatever was happening. I prayed for those in Grand Rapids, I prayed for families of those attending, and I prayed for those reported to need prayer. I hadn't planned to watch Synod 2023, but as I prayed I found myself drawn to the proceedings and ended up watching the final days’ work.”

A synod prayer team will offer a daily prayer on Facebook each morning of synod for those who want to participate in a virtual corporate prayer. A toolbox of prayer resources will be available for congregations, and individuals can sign up to receive 40 days of prayers around the synodical theme of “God With Us” for the weeks leading up to synod’s start.

“We worked hard to achieve a diversity of ethnicity, gender, age, geographical location, ability, language, and perspective in the authors of the daily prayers,” said Anita Brinkman, who helped pull the 40 days of prayer together. “Twelve of the prayers are in 10 languages other than English, each with an English translation provided. We have writers from their teens to well past retirement. It’s our hope that these prayers will help to guide us all into God’s presence as we come together to pray for the Christian Reformed Church.”

Hoekema hopes that this buffet of prayer opportunities will help CRC members across the globe join together in prayer during this important week. Whether it is corporate prayer during a worship service, dedicated prayer during a time of personal devotions, or watching a daily video on social media, all of these prayer efforts can help us properly center our attention on God and discerning God’s will for the Christian Reformed Church.

To learn more or to sign up for any of these opportunities, visit Those interested in participating in the on-campus, pre-synod prayer gathering are asked to register. Hoekema noted that room and meal costs will be covered by donations, but participants are responsible for their own transportation.

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