The World Day of Prayer is a global ecumenical movement which brings Christians of many traditions together to observe a common day of prayer each year. Through preparation and participation in the worship service, we can come to know how our sisters of other countries, languages and cultures understand the Biblical passages in their context. We can hear their concerns and needs and can feel ourselves in solidarity with them as we pray with and for them. In this way, it is possible to enrich our Christian faith as it grows deeper and broader in an international, ecumenical expression.
- The motto of the World Day of Prayer movement is Informed Prayer and Prayerful Action. Through our participation in the World Day of Prayer, we affirm that prayer and action are inseparable and that both have immeasurable influence on the world.
- The World Day of Prayer is an ecumenical prayer movement developed from a Christian women’s perspective as a creative response to issues of concern around the world.
- Women in Canada and the U.S. who committed themselves in the 19th century to missionary endeavours abroad created the vision that led to an inter-denominational prayer service practice in the 20th century.
- In 1926, North American women distributed the worship service to many countries, but 1927 marks the first official World Day of Prayer in countries around the globe.
- The annual celebration of the World Day of Prayer is held on the first Friday in March. In March 2012, the World Day of Prayer service is written by the women of Malaysia on the theme “Let Justice Prevail”.
- As the circle for World Day of Prayer participation widened, the World Day of Prayer International Committee (WDPIC) was formed with an office in New York to oversee its administrative work in 1968.
- At the Quadrennial meeting of the World Day of Prayer International Committee, delegates come from over 170 countries to select themes and writers for future services, discuss current issues, share experiences and grow in understanding of one another.
- Proceeds from the World Day of Prayer help offset the costs of service preparation, resource printing and distribution in addition to enabling the ongoing program work of the World Day of Prayer, Australia.
- Over the past 6 years, it is estimated that the World Day of Prayer service was translated into more than 90 languages, and experienced by over 16 million participants in over 170 countries.
- Europe leads World Day of Prayer participation levels, followed by Africa, Caribbean/North America (Canada, US and Caribbean), Pacific, Asia, Latin America and Middle East.
The symbol for World Day of Prayer was developed by the women of Ireland and adopted as the international logo in 1982. Its design is made up of arrows converging from the four points of the compass, persons kneeling in prayer, the celtic cross, and the circle, representing the world and our unity through all our diversity.