The Salvation Army joined more 500 MPs, peers and Speaker John Bercow at the Houses of Parliament for the annual National Prayer Breakfast (Tuesday 26 June) to pray for an Olympic Truce ahead of the 2012 games.
The annual Breakfast, which celebrates the contribution that Christianity makes to national life in the UK and overseas, took the theme of the resolution by the United Nations to pursue initiatives for peace and reconciliation in the spirit of the Ancient Games.
Lieut-Colonel Ivor Telfer, chair of The Salvation Army's Olympic Task Force, told the audience how the international church and charity is playing a major role during London 2012 as an official venue and by handing out water and refreshments during the Games at major transport hubs. The Salvation Army's Hadleigh Farm in Hadleigh, Essex, which includes a training centre for people with special needs and a rare breeds centre, is the venue for the London 2012 mountain biking events (11 and 12 August).
Other speakers included former paralympian Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, The Bishop of London Rt Hon Revd Richards Chartres, and singer and actress Tabitha Webb.
Rt Hon Stephen Timms MP, Shadow Employment Minister, said: “Both in Government and now in Opposition I have valued a close relationship with The Salvation Army and admired its vital work. In East London we are looking forward to the London Olympics, and I am delighted that, alongside its more familiar roles, The Salvation Army is host to one of the Olympic venues at its historic site in Hadleigh, Essex.”
Lieut-Colonel Ivor Telfer said: "It was very interesting to hear of MPs praying for each other and sending texts to each other because of some of the issues they have to discuss and because of how they would impact their faith.”
The chair of the National Prayer Breakfast Lord Bates recently completed a 3,000-mile Walk for Truce from Mount Olympus to London to raise awareness of the Olympic Truce.