Drive Through Prayer a summertime symbol of God's care for all
By Aaron Epp | Thursday, July 25, 2013
Photo courtesy of Portage Avenue Church
WINNIPEG, MBDriving down Portage Avenue this summer and in need of prayer? Getting some is as easy as picking up McDonald's for supper.
For the fourth summer, Portage Avenue Church is offering its Drive Through Prayer ministry. Every Wednesday from now until mid-September, from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., motorists, cyclists and anyone walking by can stop in at the church's parking lot and have someone from the church, located just east of Polo Park Shopping Centre, pray for them.
George Toews, senior pastor at the church, says the ministry is one way the church can be a blessing to the community.
"It's just two hours once a week in the summer, but it's a symbol," he says. "It shows people we care for them and are praying for them, and that God cares for them."
Drive Through Prayer is advertised on the church's electronic sign, and the prayer teams also have large signs with them that say, "Stop here for prayer" and "We're praying for you."
"Once a week, those that drive by regularly know that God is there for them," Toews says.
He adds that people request prayer for a variety of things, including health issues, relationships, work-related problems and life decisions they are facing. Some people who stop are Christians, while others have no faith background.
Peggy Jensen, who helped start the ministry and organizes volunteers for each shift, says prayer team members are respectful and subtle in their approach. They don't try to convert people by preaching at them, but they do say small things like, "God loves you"something simple that they hope will leave the person thinking.
"We're just there to love people," Jensen says, adding that she's excited about the ministry because it's about getting out of the church and having a presence in the community.
Portage Avenue Church is more than a building, she says.
"We're a people and we love you," Jensen says. "I guess that's the message we're trying to convey."