Prayerful preparation for Advent with Pray as you go
The digital communications team at Jesuit in Britain have produced a new video to promote Pray-as-you-Go, the app and online Jesuit resource that guides you through a daily prayer. Emma Holland, Producer, and Ruth Morris, Digital Communications Manager, collaborated with Polish producer Mikolaj Cempla to produce the video, which has been released for the Advent season to help listeners prepare prayerfully for Christmas.
Producing the high-quality recordings for Pray-as-you-Go often means that Emma is working months in advance. Emma explained, “The journey started for me when Salt of the Sound sent me their Christmas album ‘Waiting for the Dawn’. I listened to their version of O Come O Come Emmanuel and thought it was really powerful – I found myself listening to it on repeat (unusual as it was around April or May time), and it made me think of the Advent audio journey our listeners take with us each year.”
The short video follows a variety of people, of different ages and different backgrounds as their daily lives unfold in the melting pot of a busy global-city. Amongst all the stresses and strains of modern urban life they manage to carve out some time of meditation.
“The concept behind the video was that listeners might be able to see something of themselves in the video; their own prayer lives, routines and journey”, Emma explains. Against this backdrop, the rich hope of Advent slowly rises, showcasing the versatility and the effectiveness of Pray-as-you-go.
At the end of the first week of release, Ruth said, “We are really happy with it, and it has already been watched over 2000 times on YouTube and almost 4000 times on Facebook.” The team hopes that it will be widely shared on social media and that it might encourage more people to download the app for their devices.
The video is also a testament to the wider riches and resources available when Christians from different traditions work creatively together. Mikolaj had been working for the Polish Jesuits and recently decided to go freelance. Some of the actors in the video are from the Lee Abbey ecumenical Christian community, as well as St Ignatius parish in north London, and the Mount Street Jesuit Centre.
Pray-as-you-Go has grown steadily over the last eleven years. Each week an estimated 200,000 sessions are listened to around the world. Pray-as-you-Go currently ranks as the fourth most popular iTunes podcast in the religion and spirituality category.
Fr Peter Scally SJ who founded Pray-as-you-Go eleven and half years ago said, " It is a real blessing to see how the project has grown and regularly reaches so many people now all over the world - a global community of prayer " .
The Pray-as-you-go Advent Retreat for 2017 in collaboration with Sacred Space, offers an opportunity to take time out from the hustle and bustle of Christmas preparations and create some silence and stillness to reflect prayerfully, and meditate on some 'good news' moments in the Christmas story, using Isaiah and the Gospel of Luke.