Download PDF: Prayer for Berlin – October 2008

Good News: Christians and Moslems meet each other

During the summer, Christians in Berlin spent eight quite varied weeks with about 15 young people, most of whom have a Moslem background: the CONNECTION WEEK. Tours of the city, picnics, sports, music and other activities filled the schedule. They cooked together, laughed together, and talked and listened to one another. The participating guys and girls come from different countries—nevertheless they treated one another with respect and openness.
At the end of the week, many of the youth said that they were very touched by the love and respect that they experienced during this time. At the end of the week, some of the participants attended a worship service for the first time in their lives.
The staff will remain in contact with them and will continue to spend time with them. The CONNECTION WEEK is a successful example and model of how deeply an incarnate gospel touches people, even though it expresses itself mostly through actions and not through words.

Prayer:

  • Thank God for the encounters during Connection Week
  • Pray for further contact to the participants and that God will be at work in their lives
  • Pray that more Christians will desire to encounter those who need God’s love

Café Neustart

For over three decades, the Christian initiative for addicts TEEN CHALLENGE e.V. (TC) operated a Christian tearoom in the red-light district on the Kurfürstenstraße. Their desire was to help people who are prostituting themselves to earn money for drugs. Many of the drug addicts experienced long-term change. Ex-junkies became workers in the tearoom. In 2006, the tearoom had to close. Around the same time, TC also began doing streetwork on Kottbusser Tor in Kreuzberg and opened the “Café Sehnsucht” there in May, 2008.
The association NEUSTART (new beginning) took over the work in the Kurfürstenstraße. Neustart has a good cooperation with TC in spite of the organisational separation. NEUSTART is taking care of women drug addicts who are prostitutes in the area of Kurfürsten-/Potsdamer Str. On November 8 NEUSTART will open its own café in Kurfürstenstr. 40. They want it to be a place where prostitutes can experience love and acceptance. Prostitutes can come in to get out of the cold and talk with staff from the café in a safe place.
During the last months, staff have noticed that the women are becoming more and more open and beginning to trust them more and more. The association is currently attempting to raise fund to hire a social worker.

Prayer:

  • Thank God for all Christians who are working here and in similar environments
  • Thank God for a good start of the café and for the fact that neighbours have an understanding of the need for such Christian initiatives
  • Pray for the necessary funding for this and similar Christian initiatives
  • Pray that many prostitutes will experience God’s love through this ministry

School Project Campus Rütli

During the next years a unique educational campus will be developed around the Rütli-School in Neukölln. Two years ago, the school made headlines when teachers shared in an open letter about the catastrophic state of affairs at their school. Since then, the Rütli School has made positive changes. During the coming years on the premises surrounding the school, all sorts of educational facilities will be built, including pre-schools, schools, job centres, workshops, club rooms, a café, and also parent and social work advisory centres.
1400 students will be able to learn together and receive support for their lives. In addition a hall with a stage is being built which residents can use for various events. Die Rütlistraße will be closed to traffic.
The initiative “Campus Rütli“ is designed to give new changes to socially deprived children in North Neukölln where unemployment is 35%. The results of a city-planning contest for the premises will be announced the beginning of 2009. Money for the construction will come from the Senate, the federal government, the European Union, foundations and companies.
Before construction can begin, appeals from current users of the premises, including small garden plot holders, must be cleared up.

Prayer:

  • Pray that this project will be successful
  • Pray that residents in the area will recognize and use the opportunities offered
  • Pray for good creative impulses for this project and its planning

Headmasters

School directors carry the responsibility for the practical and pedagogical design of every-day school life. They create the school’s profile and atmosphere. Private schools choose their own teachers and often their students. A headmaster can create an inspiring and safe place for everyone if he uses his creative abilities well.

Prayer

  • Thank God for all those who carry responsibility in legislation and school administration
  • Pray for wisdom to create the atmosphere needed to encourage life and learning and offer security and orientation

CDU in Berlin

We do not want to take a political stand in this prayer mail, however the miserable condition of one of the largest political parties in the capital city is driving us to pray. As reported in the national news, the chairman of the CDU in the Berlin parliament, Friedbert Pflüger, was not re-elected. In the last election of the Parliament, he was the front-runner candidate. Because of the upcoming election next year, he also tried to become the Chairman of the CDU.
This was his undoing. This would have been a normal democratic process, except for the fact it surfaced in all the Berlin CDU circles. The Berlin CDU has been crippled for quite some time by internal struggles between the district “rulers”. The party chairman, Ingo Schmitt, will step down in the beginning of 2009. Convincing candidates for both positions capable of winning a majority are not in sight.
No matter how one feels about the red-red coalition in Berlin, it needs a functioning opposition in addition to the Greens and the FDP in Parliament. The CDU is spending too much time on itself. Alternatives in programs and personnel are desperately needed. An inner renewal and stabilisation of the CDU would be positive for democracy structure in Berlin.

Prayer:

  • Pray that party officials will reflect on their political responsibility and their Christian roots
  • Pray for renewal in human resources and programs within the party
  • Pray for convincing alternatives to the current poor profile

Keeping On: Danger of Terrorism

The end of September, two men were arrested in the Köln-Bonn airport, who were allegedly leaving the country to be trained in a terror camp and who were planning terrorist attacks. Others such as the “Sauerlandtäter” will soon go on trial. Security officials and domestic policy officials continue to warn that the danger of attacks in Germany is not lessening. Let us thank God that our country has been spared Islamic terrorist attacks until now.
We should pray all the more for God to hold His protecting hand over us and that officials will discover and hinder terrorist attacks before they take place. The places most vulnerable for terrorist attacks are government buildings and Jewish facilities, as well as public transportation and large-scale events.

Prayer:

  • Pray for God’s gracious protection of our city and our country
  • Pray for the success of those tracking down terrorists and that the public will be alert
  • Pray that terrorists willing to carry out suicide attacks will come to reason and be changed by God’s love

Dates

  • Intercultural Day of Prayer for our Nation, October 3, 3:30 to 9:30 pm Lukas-Gemeinde, Kurfürstenstr. 133, Schöneberg. “People praise and pray – together for our nation“ with Christians from several African churches, Tamil and Coptic Christians from Egypt with their musical traditions; rotation between times of prayer and praise music.
  • Brian Doerksen & Band – Worship Night on October 24th at the “C-Campus” in Berlin. Tickets can be bought online at www.c-campus-berlin.de
  • Seminar from Together for Berlin: “Prayer for your district“, Saturday November 1st, 10am to 4pm, FEG Friedrichshain, Oderstr.27. Registration: Tel. 29000829 or rolf.cyrus@feg.de