• PERSIAN GULF \ Feb 21, 2003
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    American Churches Urged to Pray for Iraq Crisis
American Churches Urged to Pray for Iraq Crisis Churches across the country are being urged to give extended time in their services, next Sunday, to prayer over the Iraq crisis. The prayer focus is being organized by Christians United in Prayer, whose founder Susan Hammond said while Christians had different opinions regarding possible war with Iraq, "we must not desire that our will be done, but rather... the Lord's."

Participants will be praying for President Bush, his advisers and other international leaders. Last Sunday, churches took part in a special Worldwide Day of Prayer for Assyrian Christians in Iraq, where more than 1 million people are part of what is said to be the oldest Christian community in the world.

As military readiness is heightened, Intercessors for America (IFA) has called for prayer for chaplains in the armed services, and a spiritual awakening among servicemen and women.

Earlier this month IFA president Gary Bergel said that at this stage before Desert Storm 11 years ago, the organization was receiving "daily reports of growing prayer and fasting efforts to prepare and undergird our troops," with stories of many conversions and baptisms on bases. This time, though, "we receive daily reports of how Christians are divided, and how some are even praying 'against' one another."