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Allegheny East's 24-Hour Prayer Line Provides Comfort
Story by Samantha Blake
Attendees to Miracle Temple’s recent prayer summit witnessed many miracles.
“Does anyone on the line have something on their heart they’d like to pray for?” asks a prayer facilitator for a 24-hour prayer line.
“My mother just passed away this morning,” a caller responds. “I want to ask God to be with me.”
As prayer is requested, so it is received. On the telephone, prayer facilitators, who volunteer to be on the 24-hour prayer line, provide a listening ear for callers who desire prayer or who want to voice their testimonies of praise. Facilitators also share Bible texts to provide encouragement and inspiration for those in need of God’s word.
The prayer line is a community of callers, and it is run like a prayer group. Callers can stay on the line with unspoken requests as they listen in to those who make their requests heard, or they can unmute their line by dialing *62 and voice what God has placed on their hearts.
In a two-week period, the prayer line receives phone calls from more than 5,000 people worldwide, with calls coming in from Jamaica, Africa and Australia.
Eight churches within the Allegheny East Conference operate the prayer line. These churches include the Miracle Temple in Baltimore, Md.; Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.; Emmanuel in St. Leonard, Md.; Breath of Life in Fort Washington, Md.; Mitchellville in Largo, Md.; Fourth Street Friendship in Washington, D.C.; First church in Washington, D.C.; and Pisgah in Bryans Road, Md. Each church hosts the prayer line for 40 days, and during those 40 days, prayer facilitators are asked to fast, not only from foods, but from things that can distract the heart, such as watching television and reading certain books.
Each hour at the prayer line is devoted to a focus, such as family, children and youth, unity and fellowship, salvation, health and healing, power to rebuke the devil, bondage and addiction, marriage, finance and ministry for the incarcerated.
The idea for the prayer line began when founder Dexter Ravenell, Miracle Temple’s prayer minister and an ordained elder, recognized the need for more prayer in church. Ravenell attended a prayer meeting at Brooklyn Tabernacle (N.Y.), where more than 4,000 people were present for prayer meeting every Tuesday night. Impressed by the power of the Lord, Ravenell shares, “I was just so awestruck by the very presence of God that I [thought] ‘I’d like the church that I belong to, to have prayer be a priority.’”
After experiencing the Brooklyn Tabernacle prayer meetings, Ravenell returned to the D.C.-Baltimore area with a passion for prayer. Ultimately, the 24-Hour prayer line was birthed at Miracle Temple. And, with the help of Chaplain Saundra Austin, who is a member of the Capitol Hill church as well an elder and prayer coordinator, the prayer line has blossomed. Churches outside of the Seventh-day Adventist denomination have also gotten involved.
The churches have even presented prayer opportunities outside of the line, including a prayer cruise and most recently, a prayer summit at Miracle Temple. Ravenell shares that the church was able to witness firsthand the power of prayer. “Things that we were praying for, just broke out,” he says. During the summit more than 50 people were healed. Those who went up to the altar with a walker and cane, returned back to their seats without their aids. Ravenell also shares that a boy who was registered at a school for the blind, got his sight back on the day of the summit.
Since 2011 the prayer line has remained a full-time commitment. Austin says, “God answers prayers, and we definitely change lives on this 24-hour prayer line.”
To call the line, dial (805) 309-2350 and use access code 1001844#.
Dexter Ravenell, Miracle Temple’s prayer minister, founded the prayer line along with Saundra Austin, prayer minister for the Capitol Hill church.
Sharon Pruitt became a member of the Fourth Street Friendship church after joining the 24-hour prayer line.
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