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Golden Gate Seminary launches intercessory prayer ministry

MILL VALLEY, Calif. (BP)–Prayer throughout the day and evening is taking place at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary as a result of the school’s new intercessory prayer ministry launched May 7 on the National Day of Prayer.
Students, faculty, staff and their families are committing to pray for at least 15 minutes a week for the seminary and various requests in the campus’ prayer room.
“The Lord just put it on my heart that one of the things that would be a positive factor at seminary is an intercessory prayer ministry,” said Richard Melick, provost of the Mill Valley, Calif., seminary. Melick initiated the prayer thrust with the special chapel service coinciding with the national observance.
The service featured testimonies on how God has answered prayers of various members of the seminary family, a prayer for the summer missionaries going out this year and a dedication of the renovated prayer room.
“The seminary’s intercessory prayer ministry is designed to undergird all that we are and all that we do,” said William Crews, president of the seminary. “Our prayer room is a constant reminder that regardless of our circumstances, we need to turn aside for particular and personal prayer. Nothing is more essential to our mission as a seminary.”
Melick expressed anticipation about the prayer effort’s results: “I don’t know anything I’m more excited about right now. I really expect God to bless us in ways we don’t even know at this point.”
He said the ministry is an important way to involve every part of the seminary family.
“It’s just a simple, private way people can be involved,” he said. “My hope is that it won’t be a flashy thing because it isn’t. The plan is for a quiet, Spirit-directed expression. There’s no pressure or glory. Everyone who does it will just want to pray.”
Near the prayer room is a large drawing board breaking down in quarter-hour increments the times the room is open — Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. People desiring to pray in the room sign up in the blocks of time they can come. The board will be erased at the beginning of each semester and summer period so participants can renew their commitments.
“This will involve people who have a heart for God and for his desire to be known and fulfilled in the lives and families of Golden Gate Seminary,” said Ginger McSwain, the ministry’s volunteer coordinator. “I sense in talking to students that there is a buzz in the air on campus that God is working and I hope that the prayer ministry will ready us for what God is going to do.”
Everyone who prays with the ministry will focus on three things: the seminary itself, revival and spiritual awakening in the seminary’s surroundings — the San Francisco Bay Area — and personal prayer requests submitted from the seminary family. People can drop off prayer requests in a nearby slotbox, call them in on the hot line at (415) 380-1682, e-mail them at [email protected] or send them by campus mail.
“People get so busy here and anywhere in their day-to-day lives with their studies, families, friends, jobs and ministries,” said McSwain. “It’s not that they don’t have the heart for prayer anyway, but they just need the structure especially for people to come together collectively.”
Each trustee of the seminary agreed at this year’s meeting to pray at least one day a month for the seminary. Some trustees also gave funds to renovate the prayer room with new carpet, paint and furnishings.
At the chapel, Mike Thompson, associate professor of historical studies, said many revivals and spiritual awakenings throughout modern history came from academic settings.
“As I began my commitment in the prayer room yesterday, there was a rightness about it,” he said.
“I pray for the time when someone on our campus will be praying every minute of every day,” Melick said.

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