The Hour of Prayer

Jonathan Brownson

READ : Acts 3:1-7

One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, at three o’clock in the afternoon. (v. 1)

Both content and clock distinguished the prayer movement of 1857. The prayer meetings began one midweek day, and soon were held every day. “Union Prayer Meetings” soon became known as “The Daily Noon Prayer-meeting, Fulton Street.”

The move from weekly to daily corporate prayer was an extraordinary shift in the Fulton Street Prayer Movement. Before Jeremiah Lanphier’s meetings, many weekly prayer meetings were held on midweek or Sunday evenings. There were even a couple of other prayer meetings at lower Manhattan’s North Dutch Church. Starting in October of 1857, however, people prayed together at the church every working day of the week.

Even more remarkably, these daily prayer meetings continued, and not just for a season or during a period of special prayer emphasis. A daily corporate prayer meeting in New York City continued to meet for 103 years!

Jesus’ first followers prayed together every day. So did Jeremiah Lanphier and his fellow New Yorkers. How about us? We may observe weekly worship, but is that the only hour God is inviting us to pray?


God of the sunrise, not a day goes by without you keeping the earth spinning and our hearts beating. May there never be a prayerless day for us either. We “need Thee every hour.”