Back to School with God Sunday is a fantastic way to pray for and support your young people and school staff at the start of a new school year. It is an excellent bridge between church and school, and an encouragement to Christian pupils and staff to consider the fact that God is not confined to church, but goes with them to school.
All the resources you need are provided for you to run a whole morning service or a 10-minute children's talk within a service. Resources include suggested ways of presenting the Bible story, teaching points, PPT slides, children's activities, and prayers.
Resources for the 2017 church service are now available FREE upon registration.
The 2017 theme is "Be wise", and explores the person and character of King Solomon, the wisest king who ever lived. Discover how he is
- A WISE KING who KNOWS GOD
- A WISE KING who KNOWS HIMSELF!
- A WISE KING who PLEASES GOD
Join is a special week of prayer for Scottish schools (20-24 November), incorporating European Pray Day for Schools on Tuesday 21 November. We invite you to Join with us, wherever you are, to focus on and promote schools prayer during this week.
We have free resources suitable for school groups and adult groups. Check our events page to find out if there is a Pray Day or Join event happening near you – or let us know if you have one you would like to promote! Find out more here.
Every year we set aside time to pray together as supporters, volunteers and staff – to seek God and express our dependence on him for all our needs. Our next SU Scotland Day of Prayer is being held in January 2018.
We pray every day for things, so why do we need a special day of prayer?
A Day of Prayer is about prioritizing time with God to hear from him as well as speak to him about our concerns and needs, and our strategy for the future. On that special day it is great to know the loving, prayerful support of the SU family. You might like to take part in one of the following ways:
- Our Church PowerPoint contains slides showing different aspects of SU Scotland ministry, including a prayer that people can join in to pray aloud. Obviously this is useful at any time, and not just on our Day of Prayer! Do consider using it in a church service at any point in the year, or at a midweek meeting.
- By using our Day of Prayer Topics Sheet, either individually, or perhaps in a wider prayer group, action group or SU prayer group.
- By joining us in person on the day: see our events page for where and when.
We would love to hear from you if you have taken part, and particular if you felt God saying something in particular with regard to SU ministry. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your stories.
What is encounter?
Encounter is a youth prayer event run by SU Scotland in partnership with Urban Saints (and - new for 2018, YFC) and is held in two locations - Grangemouth and Aberdeen - each March. In 2017, almost 200 young people came together with their youth leaders to be inspired into more confident prayer. Here's what some of them said at the end of this year's event:
I feel like today I have learnt so much like trusting God and that I shouldn't be afraid to pray and talk about anything! P7 girl
Today has helped me feel closer to God; it has helped me realise I can have a personal encounter with God. S2 girl
I reckon God has been asking me to surrender my time to him, as there is a lot of stuff I want/need to do, and I find myself struggling to fit it all in. I shall have to be bold and comply. S4 boy
Many thanks for all the hard work that went into making encounter happen. Our young folks had a great day! They agreed the Bible message was really helpful and relevant. The praise band was well received and they all enjoyed the worship time. All left the event feeling they had grown in their understanding of prayer. Youth leader
DATES for 2018
Preliminary dates (still to be confirmed) for Encounter in 2018 are:
Grangemouth: Sunday 4 March 2018, 3 to 8pm
Aberdeen: Sunday 18 March 2018, 3 to 7pm
More details to follow!
Interested in serving on the team?
If you are in S5 or S6 and within travelling distance of Glasgow, join us on the planning group - or in the team who serve as youth helpers at both events. Drop an email to email@example.com to volunteer. We also need willing volunteers to serve at the events as youth helpers (aged 16 to 18) and as stewards and on the tear-down team. (Please note that all helpers will be asked to apply for accreditation as an SU Scotland volunteer and to have a current PVG certificate.)
At Encounter we want to
- motivate and equip young people towards a lifestyle of prayer
- create opportunities to pray – alone, with others, spoken out, creatively
- hear God’s voice and increase faith through Bible engagement, worship, and testimony of answered prayer
We would love you to keep on praying for your friends, family and school all year round. Why not hold your own "mini Encounter"?
- Speak to other youth groups in your town or area and see if they are interested in joining with you.
- Arrange a planning group.
- Choose a date and central location.
- Book a local praise band and speaker.
- Have a time of worship and pray out prayers of thanksgiving and praise.
- Share a testimony.
- Pray in small groups.
- Organise prayer stations similar to those you have seen at Encoutner.
- Come back together to worship and finish off.
- Start a pupil prayer group at your school
Pray Together! is a fun-filled, two-hour Sunday afternoon prayer event, particularly aimed at families with primary school age children who can discuss, read and write (although obviously older or younger siblings are welcome!). The vision of Pray Together! is to be
- a place for families to discover new, uncomplicated ways to pray together
- a place of fun, exploring as a family group what it means to talk with God
- a place where Jesus is at the centre.
All events run from 2:30–4:30pm.
We are currently planning the 2017-18 season of Pray Together events, however for your diary dates (to be confirmed) are:
Inverness: Sunday 12 November 2017
Uphall: Sunday 4 February 2018
East Kilbride: Sunday 22 April 2018
Hope you can join us at one of these three locations. If not, or if you would like to run Pray Together for your own church or location, do email firstname.lastname@example.org for advice. Resources for the 2016 programme are available for you to download and use free of charge (we may have spare copies already printed, so do get in touch if you are interested).
Please note that activities require a certain level of participation and literacy, and the programme is most suitable for primary aged children. The programme includes
- Bible reading
- snack time
- things to listen to
- things to do
- times to discuss and pray as a family
- take-home ideas
Here's what folks said following Pray Together! this past session:
We came not sure what to expect at all but didn't leave disappointed! Firstly, we felt very welcome. I liked the quiet calm setting and the space you chose the venue in." Parent, after Inverness event
Every morning my daughter takes something of hers to school for "Show and Tell." Yesterday morning she insisted she wanted to take her Pray Together pack. As soon as she got to the playground she whipped it out of her schoolbag and started telling her closest two pals about it. They were rapt in attention as she explained in detail everything she had enjoyed about it." Stuart, after Uphall event
Thank you for all the work that went into Pray Together. I think the vision is absolutely fantastic and really important in the discipleship of children growing up within the church. I'd love to see more families engage with it. Karen, after East Kilbride event
Pray for holidays & missions
Perhaps you can't physically go on an SU Holiday or Mission this year - but you can still join the team. We depend on our prayer partners just as much as those at the events!
If you would like to sign up to pray for camps and missions, you can do so here