Churches mark 10.10.10 with renewal of commitment on global poverty

By staff writers
October 11, 2010

From Carlisle to Penzance thousands of Christians in the UK joined an estimated 60 million people across the world to stand up for the poor on 10.10.10.

The iconic date saw events and gatherings across 70 nations, focusing on ending extreme poverty through the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Micah Challenge inspired Christians across the world to pray and promise to play their part in seeing an end to poverty. There were also special church services in Australia, India, the UK and Zambia.

In London more than 2,000 Christians made their promises across five different services at Jesus House, a large Pentecostal church in Brent Cross. One teenager promised to donate a pound a week to help eradicate poverty in Nigeria while another pledged that, for every two pairs of shoes he bought, he would donate one set to charity.

Elsewhere in the UK it is estimated that between 500-1000 churches held special services on 10.10.10. In Cornwall , Churches Together in the Penzance Area succeeded in reaching their target of persuading 10,000 local people to make promises. They presented the promises to their MP, Andrew George, on that day. Mr George plans to deliver the promises to Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

St James Church, Woodside, in West Yorkshire , also played host to their local MP, Stuart Andrew, on October 10. Parkstone Baptist Church in Dorset used the day as the inspiration for a whole month focusing on global poverty issues. Many churches used handprints as a symbol of each person’s commitment and at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, in Bury St Edmunds, children made a chain of handprints in sand and soil to symbolise their desire to end world poverty.

In the aftermath of 10.10.10, the Micah Challenge Head Office in London is expecting a deluge of promises to be posted through its doors. One recent promise came from former Prime Minister Tony Blair. Blair pledged to encourage his Tony Blair Faith Foundation's volunteers and supporters across the world to give at least 2015 hours of community service to help further the United Nation's targets.

UK Director of Micah Challenge, Andy Clasper said: “The number of people involved in this initiative shows the Church clearly cares about poverty. After the disappointment of the recent UN summit , the efforts on 10.10.10 can convince the world that an end to poverty is possible.”


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