Christians who support same-sex marriage will pray for all committed, loving relationships this Sunday (3 February) - regardless of the gender of those involved.
They will also pray for the success of legislation to give legal recognition to same-sex marriage in England and Wales. The House of Commons will vote on the issue on Tuesday (5 February).
The call for prayers on Sunday has been backed by the Queers for Jesus website and the group Christians for Equal Marriage. They made the call yesterday evening (29 January) and the idea quickly spread online.
They have asked churches to include prayers for all loving relationships, regardless of gender, in their Sunday services. Individuals will also pause to pray at 12.00 noon on Sunday.
As well as praying for the success of the legislation, supporters have been asked to pray for "God's guidance for all those affected by this issue and involved in debates on it, whatever their views". They will also ask for "God's forgiveness for any occasions on which we have promoted prejudice against same-sex couples, whether by word, deed or silence."
"I'm delighted that so many people have responded so positively to this idea," said Christian activist Symon Hill, who yesterday began the online call for a day of prayer.
He added, "It is a chance to pray not only for progress but for God's continuing guidance in the midst of confusion and controversy. It is also a reminder to the world that there are many Christians whose faith inspires them to campaign for equality. I hope that churches throughout England and Wales, and beyond, will be praying about this issue on Sunday."
The groups involved say they want to "treat those who disagree with us with love and humility, while standing up firmly for love and marriage as principles that are greater than social convention and legalism".
The socially conservative group Christian Concern, who are opposed to equal marriage, have called on their own supporters to pray on Sunday for the defeat of the legislation.
To join the day of prayer on Facebook, please visit http://www.facebook.com/events/549749351716921/?ref=ts&fref=ts . For more information, please visit http://queersforjesus.wordpress.com/2013/01/29/please-pray-for-marriage-... .