Our current prayer needs are as follows:
Challenges and Opportunities in 2017
- The Garden Tomb Shop: plans are progressing well with the proposed shop renovation, and we hope to start building work around Easter time. This is a very important and exciting project. Please pray that all necessary resources will be provided, and that the end result will be honouring the Lord, and a blessing both to the ministry of the Garden Tomb and to all who visit.
- Relations with the Waqf: there continue to be concerns regarding the new boundary wall between ourselves and the Muslim cemetery. Inspections of the wall by an independent engineer will continue through 2017. It is likely that sometime during 2017 the wall will be completed, though this is by no means a certainty. We are thankful that so far there is no evidence of the wall becoming unsafe, and we pray that this will remain so. Pray that we are able to build good relations with our Muslim neighbours.
- Skull Hill gardens: please continue to pray that the Municipality will follow through with their intension to clear the rubbish from the garden below skull hill viewing platform, and secure the site, so that we can re-establish the gardens. This land is not owned by us, but is clearly visible from Skull Hill viewing platform.
- Visitor numbers: we give thanks for near record numbers of visitors in November. This surge continued through December and we welcomed about 20,000 visitors to the garden in the last 4 weeks of the year. The last 2 months have seen a 25% increase in visitor numbers compared with the same period last year.
- Looking ahead: it is too early to be certain, but we are hearing from some tour companies and tour guides that numbers of visitors from China, South East Asia and South America are set to rise sharply in 2017. Join us in praying that we are able to meet this opportunity by recruiting volunteers able to make known the ‘Good News of Jesus’ in the languages of these nations.
Impact: please pray for:
- Daily empowering of the Holy Spirit for all Garden Tomb staff as they welcome and serve our visitors
- Boldness and sensitivity for the guides as they speak about the garden, and about the death and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah
- Skill and creativity for our garden, maintenance and housekeeping teams: that the beauty of the garden might bless all who visit
We pray that everyone who visits the Garden Tomb will be blessed, encouraged and challenged by the Witness and Worship experienced in the garden
- Local staff and overseas volunteers: that our unity and love will be evident to all
- Volunteer recruitment: we want, as much as possible, to ‘make Christ known’ to visitors in their own language. We aim to recruit volunteers who speak the languages of our visitors