Download PDF: Prayer for Berlin – January 2009
Nothing is impossible – Verse of the Year 2009
The prayer news team greets you at the beginning of the year 2009 with the verse of the year: What is impossible with men is possible with God. (Luke 18:27)
What does that mean for us at Together for Berlin? It reminds us of the unlimited possibilities of God that we can draw from through prayer. That changes our focus from human possibilities to a larger perspective. It does not, however, mean that we are exempt from doing our part.
If only God can do what is impossible, it does not lessen the value of what we can do: that which is possible. Our active involvement in and with the world has value – and beyond that, we can trust God that He will work with us and through us, doing that which lies beyond the realm of our possibilities. So we wish you „joyful praying“ in 2009!
The editorial staff
Good News: Winter2go
Participants in „Winter2go“ reported a great openness to the gospel. During the event, one hundred Christians dressed up as Santa Claus shared the gospel with people on the streets and in public transportation.
More than 60 people prayed and received Christ. Many others were touched by the gospel. The event was even reported about on a TV newscast.
- Thank God for this event and for the positive reactions
- Pray that people who were exposed to the gospel will continue to show interest
Good News: New BVG Security
By the end of 2009, safety glass which will protect drivers from the front and from behind will be installed in all buses of the Berlin Verkehrsbetriebe (BVG).
A project of the Spandau SPD Representative Raed Saleh called „Strong without Violence on Tour“ began in December. Young people are riding on the buses as volunteers, attempting to help calm down other youth prone to violence.
- Thank God for this answer to prayer
- Pray that these measures will be successful
Good News: Fewer Armed Robberies
In comparison to 2007, the number of armed robberies in Berlin decreased by about 20 percent. The police president Mr. Glietsch sees this as a direct result of the intensive project. Youth who commit more than ten crimes in a given year are assigned a personal helper who oversees them. In addition there is a new concept for juvenile offenders „on the brink“ that is aimed towards those who commit five to nine crimes in any given year.
More good news: In recent years, the Berlin correctional system complained about crowding in the jails and prisons, but now this is no longer the case. In 2007 there was a nine percent rate of overcrowding. Currently this is down to only one to two percent. This reduces stress and aggression in the prisons. In addition, this might also be the reason for the marked decline in suicides among inmates.
- Thank God for these positive changes
- Pray for further good measures in the correctional system and the police that lead to a further reduction in crime
Ideas for social entrepreneurships
Berlin has always been a city that sent innovative impulses into the entire world, thus having a global influence. For this reason, the city draws people who want to use this potential.
In the beginning of November the Freie Universität (FU) sponsored its second „Vision Summit“ – summit for social entrepreneurships with the Nobel Peace Prize winner M. Yunus from Bangladesch. His idea of giving microcredit to the poorest has helped many people in his home country to find a new perspective on life.
Last year he started an initiative for the encouragement of social entrepreneurship. Business are to be founded all over the world that do not aim for maximum profit, but rather aim toward solving problems in society and have a priority on positive social effects.
Yunus has chosen Berlin to be the centre of his activities in this area. The FU will be the centre of scientific accompaniment this new social entrepreneurship. For Yumus, Berlin stands for a peaceful change from one system to another. A kind of „creative laboratory“ for social entrepreneurship will be created in Berlin. The model of microcredit will be tried out in Germany. The high number of participants (over 1000) at the Vision Summit shows how large the interest in this new concept is.
- Thank God for people like Yumus who are searching for ways to run companies that further social concerns
- Pray that the Berlin Creative Laboratory will develop brand new methods of social entrepreneurships
- Pray for innovative ideas for social entrepreneurship will be developed in Berlin and spread elsewhere
Budget planning 2010 / 2011
In the New Year, Berlin’s financial administration begins its budget planning for 2010/2011. The current financial crisis makes it harder than ever before to estimate how the economy and the financial markets will develop.
Finance Senator Thilo Sarrazin will be confronted with huge desires on the part of various areas of Berlin’s financial administration. In the face of an increasingly difficult financial situation, financial investments are being applied for from all sides hoping to jump-start the economy. This is a huge challenge for the budget planning.
In addition, budget planning always set the stage for the future. The question needs to be asked: What investments will make Berlin’s future more secure? Which projects strengthen the next generation?
- Pray for wisdom and vision for the Finance Senator and his staff for the budget planning.
- Pray for financial planning for Berlin which will give opportunities to the next generation
Keeping On 1 – leftwing and rightwing violence
On the fringes of an approved right-wing demonstration in Lichtenberg in December there were outbreaks of violence between police and anti-demonstration activists. Even though the majority of the anti-demonstration activists were peaceful, violence-prone leftwing activists used this opportunity for violent outbreaks.
Let us continue to pray that leftwing and rightwing violence in our city will be reduced and that people will choose peaceful means to further their political causes.
Keeping On 2 – ProReli
The initiative „ProReli“, which aims at reestablishing religion classes in addition to ethics classes as an elective in schools, is continuing to collect signatures until January 21. By that time, 170,000 signatures must be collected in order to bring the petition to a vote.
Let us continue to pray for this issue.
Evangelical Alliance Week of Prayer
Once again this year, Christians of all denominations in many countries around the world and also in Berlin will gather together during the Evangelical Alliance Week of Prayer. From January 11-18, 2009 over 100 different prayer meetings will be taking place in the capital city.
What can we expect? „That after this week, Berlin’s history will be different than if the capital city’s Christians stayed home,“ writes the correspondent of Transworld Radio, Oliver Jeske, in his preface to the brochure of the Evangelical Alliance outlining the various prayer meetings in Berlin.
During the week of prayer there is a city-wide prayer service taking place in the Lukas church (Kurfürstenstr. 133, Schöneberg) on January 16 at 7pm. The week of prayer will end with a service for all on January 18, 3pm in the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtniskirche. Axel Nehlsen will preach.
An overview all of the prayer meetings in various Berlin districts can be found at http://www.ev-allianz.de. The text of the brochure containing inpulses for prayer can be found at http://www.ead.de. Both brochures are also available at all participating churches.
- Pray that many Christians will encounter one other and God during this week
- Pray that participants will be encouraged to begin the year 2009 with more faith and expectancy
- Pray that impulses for the spiritual life of the city will spread forth as a result of the week of prayer