Burgess Hill Salvation Army 'pray and reflect on the town'

Members from The Salvation Army Church in Cypress Road, Burgess Hill, spent two hours walking around the town to say prayers of blessing over the community.

Wednesday, 29th January 2020, 3:06 pm
Updated Wednesday, 29th January 2020, 3:08 pm

Brian Webb, a member of the church, said: “Prayer is about talking to God and that is something we can all do.

"The team walked and prayed for schools, businesses and families in Burgess Hill.

"We also set up a prayer table in the town centre and were pleased to pray for people who asked us.”

The hope is for the prayers to become a regular occurrence in the town, and for every road in Burgess Hill to have been walked down and prayed for.

Major Mark Herbert, a divisional commander, is responsible for the Salvation Army's work across Kent and Sussex.

He said: "The Salvation Army is a church based on military structures.

"When it started in Victorian England in the 1860s, founders said 'we're in a war against poverty and evil so we're going to be an army' and so they structured themselves in that way.

"To equate my role to the Church of England, I'm the bishop.

"We have 36 Salvation Army churches across Sussex of varying sizes. Burgess Hill is a fairly small congregation with about 25 people, and if you came to a Sunday morning service it would be very similar to what you might expect in church being in the Baptist: singing, Bible readings, prayers.

"And it's a very relaxed setup that we have."

He said when he was with the whole church in October to talk to them about what they were doing in terms of their programmes and activities, they said they would like to pray for the town.

One of the elders of the church thought about walking down every road in Burgess Hill, and praying and reflecting on the town.

The team set up a table in town with leaflets and a board explaining why they were there.

Mr Herbert said: "It's always surprising to see how many people you can connect and engage with.

"My experience tells me that even people who have no faith, or if their church background is completely different to mine, people think there's something within them that, even if they don't believe in a good or a greater being, they want to believe there is something more, something bigger than they are."

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