For several years, my alma mater in St. Paul, MN, hosted a campus prayerwalk in August, prior to the start of the school year. Alumni with a heart for this Christian liberal arts university gathered to hear specific prayer requests and a “state of the union” from the president of the university. We then broke into teams and wandered around the campus, stopping to pray at various sites. Less-mobile participants enjoyed being chauffeured around by a university vehicle to various prayer spots. It was fun to see some of the old sites, like Doc’s corner, where students would hang out for coffee and conversation. And it was also interesting to see new construction of dorms and academic buildings.
Each year I looked forward to this opportunity. I prayed for students to enjoy spiritual encouragement and healthy relationships, as I did. I prayed for favor in their academic studies (that I wish I had enjoyed more!). And, without fail, I prayed for revival and spiritual awakening on that campus. I remember the joy, one year, of hearing that students had established a 24/7 prayer tent in the main square of the campus to pray all hours of the day and night for that long-desired revival!
Eventually, however, with the challenges of schedule conflicts and driving to the other side of the Twin Cities in rush-hour traffic, I lost track of the event. And I joined the ranks of most alumni who find it difficult to return to their campuses.
A New Way to Pray for Campuses
But distance and inconvenience do not need to limit our vision for prayerwalking every campus in the U.S. (and your campus). Through a virtual prayerwalking site developed by EveryCampus, it is now possible to prayerwalk a campus next door—and even one thousands of miles away!
Go to everycampus.com, click on the prayer tab, and type in the name of your alma mater or any other school. Or put in a zip code to find a campus in your own community. Once you’ve prayed for a campus, you can expand your virtual prayerwalking to search for campuses across the United States that have not yet been adopted for prayer.
When you select a campus, the site offers a downloadable prayer guide. Step-by-step instructions prepare you for your prayerwalk, suggest ways to spend your time, and give you an opportunity to debrief. Clicking on the Overview tab opens a Google Maps link of the campus that includes the details of the academic buildings, dorms, and other facilities.
Then the fun begins. Select a “Pegman” icon (representing a virtual you as you prayerwalk) and drag the icon around the campus. If you stop on a site and select Street View, you can see the actual buildings. Then rotate 360 degrees and begin your prayerwalk. To cover the entire campus, click on more buildings and areas—even the athletic fields and parking lots!
This fall some colleges and universities are welcoming returning students; others, because of COVID precautions, are continuing distance learning. All are facing unique challenges. Although you may not be physically present, you can prepare the way in prayer for students to thrive in their educational pursuits—and perhaps encounter Christ.
CAROL MADISON is editor of Prayer Connect.