Prayer gatherings level the ground between small churches and big churches

Ben Greene

Pastor & writer

  • Church strengthening

This is the second story in a three-part series. Read the first story in the series.

An eleven-year-old prayer movement gathers Queen Creek, Arizona's largest and smallest churches because a congregation somewhere in the middle pursued a heavenly priority with a humble posture.

In 2012, pastor Ben Cloud and a group of disciples from Amadeo Church desired to worship and intercede with other groups. LifePoint, one of the area's larger churches, agreed to host and facilitate the first gathering.

A month later, Cloud and his prayer team invited the smallest church in town to host the second all-church worship and prayer session. At that point, the prayer gathering faced two challenges: some large churches were so busy one more event might feel overwhelming, while small churches might feel threatened that people would join a bigger congregation.

So Amadeo’s team and other leaders continually emphasized a spirit of mutual submission between the churches. The prayer gatherings have welcomed dozens and sometimes involved hundreds. Cloud said every church in the town has had a chance to host the prayer times in a way that honors the Lord and their particular convictions.

The outcome is increased unity between the churches, Cloud said. Experiences or influences that could divide churches lose their power when they are in a relationship grounded in prayer. He said 10 years of prayer have helped more people meet, know and follow Jesus.

"Why has a little Converge church have outsized influence?" Cloud has often wondered.

The answer, he said, comes down to the Spirit's work and the submission of all the churches to one another, as unto the Lord.

"The ramifications of humility and mutual submission are huge," Cloud said. "We are definitely better together, and we have gotten a lot of work done because we play well together."

Converge is a movement of churches working together to help people meet, know and follow Jesus. We do this by starting and strengthening churches together worldwide.

Ben Greene, Pastor & writer

Ben Greene is a freelance writer and pastor currently living in Massachusetts. Along with his ministry experience, he has served as a full-time writer for the Associated Press and in the newspaper industry.

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