Bristol Salvation Army church praying for Syria

A Salvation Army church near Bristol has been praying for peace and the people of Syria as part of its prayer for a day event.

Pill Corps opened its doors last Friday for people to come and pray at the church between 9am and 9pm.

The church is one of only two Salvation Army prayer beacons in the UK, meaning that it has a special focus on prayer.

It has a special prayer room upstairs as well as a prayer station downstairs where those with mobility problems can pray.

The monthly "prayer for a day" event focused on Syria, where the civil war has caused around two million people to flee their homes. Prayers were also said for the Pill community.

Salvation Army officer Captain Heather Godwin, who runs the church with her husband Anthony, said: "As a church we care about everyone in need.

"We wanted people to come to us when they need support and as part of our identity as a prayer beacon we want people to feel there's someone there praying for them when they're in need or vulnerable.

"That's why we have set up a prayer request box attached to the church. And every month we hold a prayer for a day event.

"This month we have been focusing on requests we have been sent in from across the UK. We also had an hour where we prayed for the people of Syria and for peace and healing there."

Even the Kids Alive children group makes time amid the teaching and games to pray at the prayer station, and the youth club also includes opportunity for prayer.

Captain Godwin added: "We really care about our community. So we have regular prayer walks and invite other churches from the area to attend.

"This is where we go out and walk around the town. We pray for people's needs and issues we know about in the community. It puts you out in the area as a visible presence, showing we care.

"We've even been told that after we've been out on a prayer walk there's been a decrease in crime.

"Anyone who comes to us with a prayer request is welcome. However large or small the need, they will receive a friendly welcome. We aim to offer people compassionate support and a listening ear when they come to us."