Nationwide Christian Trust celebration
Prayer image prayer Guide for Parilament and the Nation

British Values: 2-8 July

Ofsted's new chief inspector of schools, Amanda Spielman, recently stated that schools should do more to teach British values. The requirement for schools to “actively promote” British values in schools was introduced by the Government in 2014. However, Ms Spielman admitted that there was no proper definition of "British values" stating that "schools will have to work it out" and individual Ofsted inspectors will determine whether or not the promotion of British values by schools is adequate. The Christian Institute’s Education Officer expressed concern at Ms Spielman's comments claiming they could encourage Ofsted inspectors to put pressure on schools "based on their own subjective opinion of what constitutes British values. This will continue to leave schools vulnerable to inspectors’ personal biases.”

Since the introduction of the requirement that schools promote "British values", reports have indicated that Ofsted inspectors have used this against faith schools, aggressively questioning teachers and pupils over their beliefs on same-sex marriage and transsexualism.

PRAY for the Government to address the concerns surrounding the promotion of British values in schools and for the preservation of religious freedoms. Pray for God to prevent our education system from being used to promote any particular political agenda, and to protect the hearts and minds of our children.

News of the week

  1. Earlier this week, North Korea celebrated its first successful test launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile. The US called for global action to counter North Korea's “escalation of the threat” and requested a closed meeting of the UN security council in order to agree tougher measures against North Korea. China and Russia are also urging talks to encourage North Korea to dismantle its nuclear program.

PRAY for God's wisdom for international leaders as they appeal for a diplomatic resolution to the crisis. Pray for the safety of citizens in neighbouring countries, including Japan and South Korea, and the US. Pray for God to bring peace and prevent further escalation of tensions between the US and North Korea.

  1. At the beginning of June, a Saudi Arabia-led group of countries in the Gulf imposed a diplomatic, transport and economic blockade on Qatar accusing the country of supporting terrorism and building links with Iran. The US Secretary of State plans to visit Kuwait on Monday, which is currently mediating the dispute.

PRAY that the crisis in the Gulf does not deepen. Pray for international intervention to help to resolve the issues through talks and diplomacy. Pray for terrorism in the area to end.

  1. Northern Ireland's executive broke down in January 2017, following a decade of power-sharing between unionists and republicans. Despite numerous extensions to the deadline, talks between the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and Sinn Fein have failed to reach an agreement and establish a new executive in Northern Ireland.

PRAY for the DUP and Sinn Fein to resolve the outstanding issues between them and for a new executive to be formed in Northern Ireland without the need to resort to direct rule from Westminster. Pray for the British Government to use its influence positively. Pray for God to overrule and bring about his purposes for Northern Ireland.

  1. It is now three weeks since the devastating fire at Grenfell Tower in Kensington, London, which tragically killed around 80 people. So far, only 21 people have been formally identified and the police confirmed this week that it could take until the end of the year before it is clear exactly how many people died. 158 families are in need of re-housing following the fire.

PRAY for all who lost loved ones in the fire and are still waiting for formal confirmation of their deaths. Pray for those families in need of re-housing to be given appropriate and adequate support, both practical and emotional. Pray for ongoing support for all affected by the fire to deal with the resultant trauma.

  1. BREXIT: On Monday, the Government triggered its withdrawal from the London Fisheries Convention, an agreement signed in 1964 (before the UK joined the EU) which allows fishing vessels from other countries to fish within six and 12 nautical miles of the UK's coastlines. The move was described by the Environment Secretary, Michael Gove, as an “historic first step towards building a new domestic fishing policy as we leave the European Union.”

PRAY for the UK's fishing industry as it prepares for the effects of withdrawal from the London Fisheries Convention and the EU Common Fisheries Policy. Pray for future Government policy to support small-scale, sustainable fishermen and for ongoing cooperation with neighbouring countries to ensure the protection of the environment and sustainable fish stocks.

British Values: 2-8 July

Please use these prayers both in your individual and church prayer times to hold the nation and its leaders before God in prayer and with thanksgiving (1 Timothy 2:1-4).

Our weekly emails are now accessible via the Blog page on our website. Catch up on any news you may have missed or return to emails at a later date. You can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Please consider making a donation to support our work in providing these emails and other resources.

For a copy of the Prayer Guide: 01277 365 398 Option 4