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Bethlehem Blogs

January 10, 2017

Prayer Walks at the US Bank Stadium in 2017

Ming-Jinn Tong

Pastor for Neighborhood Outreach, Downtown Campus

Sarah Williams is the lay leader of the group Bethlehem Against Sexual Exploitation (BASE). I’ve asked her to help us understand the importance of surrounding the U.S. Bank Stadium with prayer in this year leading up to the Super Bowl in 2018.

With an increase in visitors to the Twin Cities for the Super Bowl in 2018 (February 4), there will be a corresponding increase in illegal activities, such as drugs, abuse, excess drinking, and human trafficking. Sergeant Grant Snyder, head of the Minneapolis police task force against human trafficking, confirmed that whenever big sporting events occur in the Twin Cities, the police see an increase in people visiting strip clubs and purchasing prostitutes. Backpage ads and trafficking incidents skyrocket to around 500 times higher than normal. 

Earlier this year, we asked the Minneapolis police task force how Bethlehem Baptist (through the group Bethlehem Against Sexual Exploitation) and other churches in the area could help to prepare for the Super Bowl—and the unwanted activity that comes with it— in 2018. Sergeant Snyder responded, “It would be awesome to have people gather to pray. That is the #1 thing that churches can do.”

This is why we are holding the BASE Prayer walks at the stadium. 

Specific prayer requests include ...

  • The police as they go through training
  • Physical and emotional strength for the police and their families throughout the year leading up to the Super Bowl, especially in the week right before and right after the Super Bowl.
  • Victims of trafficking finding freedom and being able to reach out to people and organizations for help
  • A sense of conviction of sin in the hearts of men and women who are planning to go to strip clubs, purchase prostitutes, or get involved in trafficking. Pray that they will be freed from doing these activities.
  • For unity among the organizations  that serve as a resource for victims who are stuck in trafficking.

At Bethlehem, we want to unite with other churches in the Twin Cities to come alongside the police and support them through prayer. We want to surround the stadium with prayer as a symbol that we stand against trafficking and that we serve a God who is bigger than trafficking and can enable freedom in even the darkest situations.

Would you join us this Saturday, January 14, at 10am as we begin our year-long prayer focus? All are welcome to gather at the Downtown Campus for Prayer Walk: Sex Trafficking & the Super Bowl.