Sometimes it is only in reflection we see God’s gifts other times we are so overwhelmed by them and are amazed at God knowing us so intimately and providing just what we need. God’s gift of Carey prayer group fits squarely in the second category. Since its inception in 2015 it has been God’s vehicle for creating community, personal growth, encouragement, friendship and answered prayer.
God was behind this group from the start, using the grumblings of teenagers, “I think I am the only Christian at school” and the stirring of a mother’s heart to connect with other Christians for this group to start in a coffee shop in Camberwell. With the school chaplains support ten families quickly expressed interest in connecting with other Christian Carey Grammar families. The next event was a family dinner where a prayer walk around the school was organised.
The joy and blessing of the prayer walk led to a desire to meet regularly in the school chapel and with our three school chaplains. These times of prayer were mutually encouraging for the chaplains, school leadership and parents. Remembering our school founders and all those who have gone ahead of us praying for our school, students and teachers. It became clear through prayer that God was using our chaplains in a mighty way and we needed to be quite purposeful in our prayers for them. This led to setting up a Carey Prayer WhatApp Group. The app gave us the opportunity to let the now thirty plus families know when our chaplains were running chapels or speaking at assembly so we could be lifting them in prayer.
We have been surprised at the blessing of being part of this prayer group, there are often messages from members saying they love starting the day with the reminder to pray for the school, or they have loved the community feel of being part of the group, or the blessing of being able to share prayer/praise points. Being such a large school every year there are families experiencing terminal illness and unexpected deaths which the chaplains walk closely with them through. Instead of feeling helpless in these circumstances we consider it a privilege to pray for the families and the chaplains through this time. The prayer group also gives us an opportunity to share our faith with others in the school community, sharing how it is an outworking of our faith to pray for the school and our desire to pray for them.
The blessings of encouragement, personal growth, friendship this prayer group has brought leave us in awe at God’s faithfulness and love for our school community. We have appreciated the support of the Prayer Group for Schools, our school chaplains Gerry Riviere, Janine DePavia and Scott Bramley, the school leadership and Board. We would encourage others if you don’t have a school prayer group to pray about starting one. The joy and encouragement of having others to travel the Christian road at school with is a tremendous blessing.