Church Planting in Panama

. 1 min read

Global Ministries missionaries David and Cynthia Ceballos, who serve in Panama, offered this “P.R.A.Y.” acronym in a recent article of the May-June issue of New World Outlook magazine. P.R.A.Y. has served the Ceballos as a guide to purpose their church development ministry in Panama. Consider how P.R.A.Y. can guide your church ministry or strategies. 

The acronym P.R.A.Y. serves three purposes for an initial stage of church development here in Panama: It sets our values, guides our priorities, and determines our strategy.

“P” stands for establishing a presence where there has not been a Methodist presence before. We are engaged in incarnational ministry. “And the Word became flesh and lived among us.” (John 1:14 NRSV)

“R” represents relationship. We have a vocation of building relationships both with God and with our neighbors. That is what the greatest commandment and the second, which is like it, are all about.

“A” stands for adaptability. The context in which we work determines the strategy and ministries we need. We have to remain adaptable to our circumstances rather than rely on preconceived programming.

Use this P.R.A.Y. acronym as a guide to set purpose for your church ministry.“Y” represents our Yes. “Yes, Lord, here am I, use me if you can.” We are guests on planet Earth, and God has asked us to participate in telling the redemption story. So, we pray with humility and respond with “Yes.” Nothing in the acronym P.R.A.Y. says anything about building something, doing something, or organizing something. Those things are secondary at this stage of development.