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Hotline for Hope – Story:
The 800 number rings incessantly.
Phone Volunteer: “And what state are you calling from, Judy?”
This is no late night call-in show … it’s a 24-hour prayer line.
Mary O. Benedict / Director, Upper Room Living Prayer Center: “The volume of calls is up and people are concerned.”
Phone Volunteer: “And your friend’s name?”
These days, the worry is war.
Mary O. Benedict: “I had a grandmother on the line the other day just crying because her grandson has been deployed.”
Royce Monk / Phone Volunteer, praying on phone: “And we just come now lifting to you our leaders …”
Royce Monk – one of a legion of volunteers – has prayed with strangers for 15 years. She believes prayer can make a difference.
Royce Monk: “I wouldn’t give two hours a week if it didn’t. In other words, I don’t believe in spending my time on something that’s not effective.”
Phone Volunteer, praying on phone: “Lord God, I thank you …”
This ecumenical ministry, in partnership with The United Methodist Church, is often the call of last resort.
Mary O. Benedict: “And they call here because they’re desperately lonely or they have no else in their lives.”
Greg / Phone Volunteer, praying on phone: “So, Father, we just pray, Lord, for your healing hand …”
Cancer, deaths, divorce … there is a world of hurt.
Royce, praying on phone: “… that she can leave it at your feet and in your hands …”
With so many crises, volunteers at the Upper Room Living Prayer Center say they answer 30,000 phone calls a month – each caller seeking peace.
Mary O. Benedict: “We’re not the hope, but we point them to the hope.”
Royce, praying on phone: “Amen.”
Hotline for Hope – Tag:
The Upper Room’s Living Prayer Center opened in 1977. Since then, almost 2 million people have been prayed for over the phone.
That number, by the way, is (800) 251-2468.