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'A great opportunity': Diocese launches prayer cards to unite fans in faith during Euros

by Kelly Valencia

The Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham has introduced a series of cards aimed at inspiring people to pray for the nations participating in this year’s European Football Championships.

The prayer initiative coincides with one of the Diocese’s seven areas of focus for this year. “We just thought this is a great opportunity to prompt prayer,” Gary Pitt, interim director of communications, told Premier Christian News.

“This is a great opportunity for us to be praying for countries that we see pop up on the screens, which we might not have heard about very often.”

Euros 2022 broke records, with 365 million people watching globally, more than double the number of viewers of the 2017 edition. This year’s figures are also expected to be high. England’s first match of the championship alone attracted 10.48 million viewers on BBC One, peaking at 14.92 million. In comparison, the Poland vs. Netherlands match on BBC One the same day had 3.23 million viewers, peaking at 4.61 million.

Each prayer card encourages individuals to express gratitude for each nation and to pray specifically for their respective challenges. For instance, England’s prayer card encourages participation in national events like the upcoming General Election on 4 July.

Asked whether the prayer cards might also be used to pray for England’s success in the tournament, Pitt humorously responded: “I'm sure many would hope every prayer card was for England's defence. But no, these cards are intended for praying for the people of the countries they represent.”

He concluded: “What we hope is that it just prompts that thought that, you know, watching this game or being in this room with others is a real opportunity to pray for those nations.”

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