Denmark: Interfaith Prayer Meeting
By Nobuhiro Igarashi, UPF Denmark
On May 6th we held an Interfaith Prayer meeting for religious leaders. In Denmark, the 4th Friday after Easter is a public holiday which is celebrated as “Store Bededag” / the Great Prayer Day by the Lutheran state church. This day was established in 1686 to gather several weekdays of penance and prayer in one day. Therefore, we decided PRAYER was a relevant focus for our interfaith gathering this time.
Eight religious leaders and eight FFWPU members participated. Gertrud Vad was MC and welcomed everybody to the 18th interfaith prayer meeting in Denmark and introduced the topic.
Everybody briefly introduced themselves and their background. Before the presentations, Gertrud read several passages from the World Scriptures.
Pastor Ole Skjerbæk Madsen, founder of Areospagos and In the Masters Light, spoke about God as a personal God who takes initiative to reach out to us and said prayer is a meeting and safe togetherness with God. The experience of God’s presence must be emanating from being in the Will of God. We need to realize that we are not just individuals and do not manage everything ourselves.
Clara Frederiksen, founder and leader of the Danish Interfaith Forum for many years, is a Catholic, but has a rather humoristic approach to our faith in God; it matters more what is Gods point of view, than what is our own viewpoint. She mentioned about the importance to learn about faith from following our natural longing for a deeper meaning in our life.
Nobuhiro Igarashi gave a very deep explanation about prayer from our principle point of view. He said, prayer is like a report and sharing with our Heavenly Parent and that it is important to pray for God’s providence, public things before we pray for more personal matters.
Karolin Keyghaldi- Østergaard, from the Assyrian Christian faith, shared her personal testimony of how God interfered in her life and led her to deep faith and trust in God. She has a strong conviction that God is guiding our lives.
After the presentations pastor Lene Skovmark led all participants in unison prayer and contemplation.
All the guests were moved and very happy for the format of our meeting and there was a deep sharing and high atmosphere during the lunch shared afterwards. Several participants commented that they felt strongly our FFWPU HQ is a house of prayer.