News Release

Church Participates in Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Elder Steven R. Bangerter of the Philippines Area Presidency joined with other Christian leaders in the 2022 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity on January 19, 6:00 pm at the Manila Cathedral in Intramuros, Manila. The theme was “We saw the star in the East, and we came to worship him (Matthew 2:2).”

The Week of Prayer for the Christian Community is held annually by the Episcopal Commission on Ecumenical Affairs of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines and the National Council of Churches in the Philippines. The said event has been more meaningful with this year’s celebration of the 500 years of Christianity in the Philippines. 

His Eminence, Jose Cardinal Advincula, the Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Metropolitan Manila, hosted the liturgical celebration. The in-person gathering was live-streamed on TV Maria and other cable channels.

Christian leaders came together in an expression of love and unity, including those from the Roman Catholic Church, National Council of Churches in the Philippines, Episcopal Church in the Philippines, United Church of Christ in the Philippines, Iglesia Filipina Independiente, United Methodist Church, Charismatic Episcopal Church, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

2022 Week of Prayer Theme

This year’s theme was focused on the Wise Men’s journey and their desire to seek out the boy, Jesus, in Bethlehem. They followed the Star in the east with the intent of bringing him gifts of Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh.

In his opening remarks, Rev. Fr. Reginald R. Malicdem, Rector of the Manila Cathedral, said,

“Drawn from different cultures, races, and languages, Christians share in a common search for Christ and a common desire to worship him. The mission of the Christian people, therefore, is to be a sign like a star, to guide humanity in its hunger for God, to lead all to Christ, and to be how God is bringing about the unity of all peoples.”

The reading of biblical scripture recounting the Savior's humble birth was the centerpiece of the ecumenical gathering's program. Church leaders recited scriptural texts one by one, beginning with Isaiah's majestic prophecies of the Savior's birth (Isaiah 9:2-7) and ending with Matthew and Luke's captivating narratives of Mary, Joseph, and the baby Jesus in Bethlehem (Matthew 2:1-12).

Elder Bangerter expressed his heartwarming gratitude for the celebration when he shared,

“The invitation to participate demonstrates the growing bonds of love, unity, understanding, and cooperation between leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and leaders of all other prominent Christian faiths in the Philippines. These bonds of friendship have grown significantly as we have come together through the challenges posed by a worldwide pandemic, earthquakes, volcanic [eruption], efforts to enhance education, and in all other ways serve the needs of the poor and downtrodden.”

Indeed, with the ongoing pandemic, and other natural calamities, Filipinos from around the country have joined hands to help out those in need. This concerted effort has brought together faiths from different religions to unite and help each other.

While Filipinos are struggling in more diverse ways due to unforeseen circumstances like the pandemic, and the recent typhoon Odette, events such as these are proof of hope, faith, and the power of prayer.

For members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, prayer is a central part of their worship to Heavenly Father in Jesus Christ.

While attending the said service, Elder Bangerter remarked,

““Prayer was the centerpiece of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity and was a uniting influence for all believers who when to God in humble prayer to thank Him for this beautiful life we have on earth.  The Spirit [of God] bore witness to all in attendance that our Heavenly Father is mindful of us.  We felt an affirmation of His love and a confirming assurance that He will protect and keep us within his protective care as we strive to live according to the teachings of our Savior, Jesus Christ..“

A recurring theme that night was the need for prayer among Christian believers.  

“The need for Christian unity has never been more profound than in our day.  It is in our striving to come together that we most perfectly respond to the Savior’s prayer, rendered amid His apostles during the Last Supper.  There, He pleaded with God that His disciples “may be one, even as we are one” (John 17:22)  The Savior’s prayerful pleading for unity became the hallmark of his intercessory prayer, and therefore, should be at the heart of our lives.  That effort was tenderly and warmly manifest as leaders from all major Christian churches throughout the Philippines came together for an evening of prayer and worship.  I will forever be grateful for that sacred experience.” Elder Bangerter concluded. 

The event ended with a chorus singing of this year’s 500 Years of Christianity Theme Song, “We give our Yes!”


Latter-day Saints worship Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. A central part of their belief is daily personal and family prayers. It is a way to express gratitude and ask for support and guidance in their day-to-day lives.

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