MEMBERS of the clergy took prayer requests from shoppers and traders in Stourport as part of the Pray One for Me national initiative.

The Bishop of Worcester Dr John Inge and other clergy members took to the streets to find out what was important to Stourport residents on Ash Wednesday.

Reverend Eva McIntyre, Vicar of Stourport and Wilden, said: "It was good to be out in Stourport on Ash Wednesday with Bishop John.

"We were talking to traders, shoppers and visitors and collecting together the list of important people and things they would like us to pray about.

"In today's world, we're too often expected to struggle through our week and take everything life throws at us on our own."

Pray One for Me began in 2009, when Bishop John collected prayers outside the Job Centre in Redditch to help people who had been affected by the Recession.

In 2010, it became a national initiative and many bishops in the Church of England now spend the day collecting prayer requests.

Reverend Mark Turner, Vicar of Areley Kings and Astley, said: "Bishop John began his visit to Stourport at St Bartholomew’s CE School on the Walshes estate for their Ash Wednesday assembly.

"He received an enthusiastic welcome and many of the children had prepared prayers as part of Pray One for Me. At the end of the assembly the children were invited, if they wished to, to receive the sign of the cross in ash on their foreheads.

"We then went on to Stourport High Street, and met with a large number of people and members of the churches in Stourport helped collect prayers for Pray One for Me.

"Bishop John found the people of Stourport friendly and welcoming, and many conversations were had, and there were indeed signs of the kingdom of God in Stourport and Areley Kings.”