For the sixth consecutive year, a group of over 25 Bryan students, faculty, and staff attended the International Justice Mission’s Global Prayer Gathering in National Harbor, Md., April 3-5.
IJM President and CEO Gary Haugen
speaks at prayer gathering According to Eric McEachron, Bryan’s assistant director of faith and mission, the gathering looks at “the overwhelming darkness in the world – slavery, sexual violence, violence against children, forced labor, broken justice systems – and we see, even in the darkest places, the dawn breaking as God intervenes.” He said, “It’s a time for us to catch a bigger vision of the world, what God is doing in it, and how we can have a real part in it through prayer. Then we do pray, all day long.”
Over the course of three days, attendees participated in an introductory dinner, several worship services, and prayer rooms for each region IJM serves, in addition to listening to key speakers share their experiences pursuing social justice. Among these were IJM President and CEO Gary Haugen; musician and worship leader Sara Groves; Director of Operations in Southeast Asia Blair Burns; and Cambodia Field Office Director Christa Hayden Sharpe.
Senior criminal justice major Daniel Katz said, “My eyes were opened to the practical and constructive work of God’s people and their emphasis on an excellent organization for the people they helped. Personally, I was encouraged by the sober atmosphere when we prayed together which made the whole experience very purposeful and very legitimate.”
“The IJM Global Prayer Gathering has become one of the most important events for our students each year,” said Director of Faith and Mission Ben Norquist. He reflected that they “kneel, shoulder to shoulder with believers from around the world who follow Jesus into the dark places of injustice with the intention of shining brightly,” and “invariably come back impassioned and with eyes open to God’s glory and goodness.”