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The power of prayer

PUBLISHED: 11:53 16 February 2002 | UPDATED: 11:22 03 March 2010

SALLY Army soldiers have shown the power of prayer in a week of non-stop praying.

The Salvation Army last night closed their marathon effort after pledging to keep a room free for quiet contemplation for a whole week.

SALLY Army soldiers have shown the power of prayer in a week of non-stop praying.

The Salvation Army last night closed their marathon effort after pledging to keep a room free for quiet contemplation for a whole week.

Stan Gladwell, spokesman for the Christian organisation in Ipswich, explained that the "24/7 prayer week" was the Ipswich Citadel's contribution to the nationwide campaign to keep a Salvation Army centre somewhere in the country engaging in prayer every day.

Members at their Woodbridge Road headquarters split the week into one-hour shifts while people wandered into the coffee lounge – more accustomed to the noisy gatherings of groups such as mothers and toddlers – for a moment's thoughtful rest.

The campaign kicked off last May and now Salvation Army units in Penge, Surrey, and Clacton-on-Sea, in Essex, take over the baton from their Ipswich comrades.

"More than 400 of the Salvation Army centres across the country have taken part," said Mr Gladwell. "This week has gone very, very well. We've had good fellowship and a good prayer time. People came in to look around, perhaps sit down quietly for five minutes' reflection. But it's amazing to stay for an hour and try to put the world out of mind. Not that you can entirely – you pray for situations around the world to change. Prayer begins with an individual and hopefully catches with someone else and then someone else. It's like a stone going into water, you don't know where the ripples end up.

"A lot of effort and enthusiasm has gone into the week."

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