ONE's Prayer for Everyone: A Worldwide Week of Prayer and Action for the Least of These

©Karen Walrond for ONE

Go back to #PrayerForEveryone.

It's time to say a prayer — in any and all languages and religious traditions — to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and combat climate change. Beginning Thursday, September 24 and running through October 1, the ONE Campaign, Global Goals, and Prayer for Everyone are inviting you and your communities to spread the word and pray for the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.

Ginny Wolfe, Senior Director of Strategic Relationships with the ONE Campaign, spoke with us about this prayer week and what we all can do — Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, etc. — to make it a success.

What's the goal of the #PrayerForEveryone campaign and who is behind it?

Prayer for Everyone aims to engage faith communities in a worldwide week of prayer and action, from 24th September to 1st October 2015, to share the new Global Goals for Sustainable Development and explore the Goals through the teachings of your faith. These Global Goals will set the development agenda until 2030 and are the world's plan to eliminate extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change. But to achieve these Goals, everyone needs to know about them, champion them, and hold their leaders to account for delivering them. Through the Prayer for Everyone initiative, we — members of faith communities — will be called to prayer and action during Global Goals week in September.

Can you tell us a bit more about these "Global Goals"?

The prayer campaign supports the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development. The issues addressed by the Global Goals are central to all religious and spiritual traditions, which are the shared expressions of our humanity:

  1. The right to live a life of dignity, free from hunger and disease
  2. The right of all people to live to their fullest human potential, in safety and well-being
  3. Protection of the integrity of creation and our resources for current and future generations
  4. The shared responsibility to work together so that our expressions of faith contribute to more sustainable development for the whole planet

Faith leaders are uniquely positioned to raise awareness and mobilize their communities to take action and reach wider audiences.

This is not just an outreach to Christians, but to all people of faith who pray. What's the hope for opening the campaign up to a multi-faith audience?

We have not only a moral and spiritual responsibility to work toward a better future for this earth and all forms of its life, but also enormous and transformative power to put toward the achievement of these Global Goals. Our faith communities have long been at the forefront of dynamic and significant change, and change is needed now more than ever.

Why do you think prayer is an important piece of supporting and achieving the Global Goals for Sustainable Development?

We know that prayer is powerful and we know that people of faith pray often for the poor and for social justice. We believe that with hundreds of millions of people of faith praying for essentially the same things over a concentrated period of time — wow! The sheer force of that!

What resources have been developed to support this campaign and where can we find them?

We have prepared an overview and toolkits in multiple languages for multiple faith traditions, which you can find on our website.

What would make this campaign a success in your eyes? What do you hope to see by the end of the prayer week?

What we pray for in the campaign is to bring hundreds of millions more people into the circle of people who know and care about and pray about and act upon these new global goals. Not just this week or next, but for years to come. That's why we say, Tell Everyone! Use social media accounts, coffee dates, religious services. Shout it out!