Intercessors for America (IFA) is a 501(c)(3) ministry organization and was founded in 1973 when God impressed upon the hearts of a group of godly, respected men the necessity of prayer and fasting. The nation was experiencing a plethora of problems. The Watergate scandal, Vietnam War, Arab oil embargo, Roe v. Wade, a growing acceptance of drug use, and other challenges were changing the way Americans lived and thought.
A group of Christians at a teaching conference in Florida focused on “prayer for the nations.” Challenged by the fresh and extraordinary teachings of the conference leaders, Derek Prince and Ern Baxter, a half dozen men were chosen to steward the movement of prayer and fasting for the nation. This group would become Intercessors for America. One of the first activities of the organization took place at a large dining table where John Talcott and his wife, Roselyn, wrote and assembled a prayer letter. This prayer letter was mailed to a group of like-minded people who recognized the need for God to intervene in U.S. governmental and cultural issues. From these beginnings, IFA has grown to impact the masses. Our leadership is comprised of staff and a board of directors, some of whom have been with the ministry since its inception.
Why We Do What We Do?
The average Christian does not have the contacts, time, or energy to keep informed about most issues on national, state, and local levels. More and more, some of these issues appear to deny our freedoms. Others undermine the basic moral fiber of our country. With each emerging concern, we need to seek God’s intervention and guidance for our leaders.
According to national studies, 83% to 90% of Christians pray at least weekly. Through our decades of experience and contacts, we estimate that only 10% of those who pray intercede for our nation and leaders. As God intervenes and works in the hearts of His people, we must continue to unite and encourage believers in effective prayer and fasting for America.
God’s Word instructs us to pray regularly for those in authority over us. According to I Timothy 2:1-4:
“I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.” (New Living Translation)
Intercessor for America informs, connects, and mobilizes intercessors to pray for our nation and our leaders. We desire to reach Christians in churches and communities nationwide with information and tools to unite them in effective prayer.
What Are Our Goals?
- To inform praying Christians about national, state, and local prayer concerns
- To connect Christians moved to intercessory prayer with like-minded intercessors
- To grow and mobilize the number of Christians regularly interceding on national, state, and local issues
How Do We Do It?
To inform, connect, and mobilize intercessors, IFA publishes materials and provides the following resources from its headquarters in Purcellville, Virginia:
- Monthly prayer letters – A First Friday Prayer Letter helps unite and focus Christians as individuals and groups in prayer and fasting. Written from a biblical perspective, the letter contains timely national reports, accounts of revival and answered prayer, inspirational and informative teachings, and provides a First Friday Prayer Focus. Fasting is encouraged during the First Friday observance as a biblical way of humility and intensifying our prayers.
- Weekly prayer alerts – The Informer is sent via e-mail three times weekly. These alerts outline critical issues in our nation’s capital and monitor foreign fronts and national emergency matters. The alert is supplied upon request to individuals, churches, groups, and organizations. Special alerts are also sent as needs arise.
These Scriptures have undergirded the prayer mobilization of Intercessors for America (IFA) since its founding in 1973:
- Matthew 6:6-18 – the pattern of Kingdom prayer and fasting taught by Jesus of Nazareth
- Mark 11:17 – the Church as a house of prayer for all nations
- 1 Timothy 2:1-4 – apostolic mandate to pray for all, and for all in authority, so that there might be good government, peace, a godly society and a release of the gospel
- 2 Chronicles 7:14 – God’s call for His people to repent, pray, and turn from their wicked ways, with the promise of healing for their land
- Ezekiel 22:29-31 – God is looking for even one leader or person who will “stand in the gap” and help avert judgment
- 2 Corinthians 10:3-4 – the weapons of warfare are not carnal, but spiritually powerful to the destruction of demonic strongholds
- Matthew 16:18, 24:14 – the gates of hell will not prevail against the Church as it proclaims the gospel of the Kingdom to the ends of the earth.
What We Believe
We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
To see God’s purposes for America fulfilled through sustained prayer and Spirit-led obedience
CONCERNING THE PICTURE OF THE FUTURE, WE BELIEVE:
- God creates nations and tears them down. (Dan. 2:21)
- God’s heart for nations is to bless them. (Ps. 33:12)
- God holds nations accountable for their collective actions. (Mic. 5:15)
- Leaders of nations are subject to God’s will. (Prov. 21:1)
- Solutions to nations’ problems are spiritual, and rest in the hands of the Church beginning with prayer and an utter dependence upon God’s power. (2 Chron. 7:14)
- God gives us the authority to affect the course of nations. (Acts 17:26)
- We must pray for God-fearing leaders (Exod. 18) and that godly government is the result of an effective Church. (1 Tim 2:1-3)
- The mandate of the Lord’s Prayer, “. . . your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven . . .,” is the purpose of God for the government. (Matt. 6:10)
- We can expect results from prayers. (1 John 5:14)
- Fasting takes our prayers to another level. (Matt. 6:16-18)
- The highest form of government is a constitutional republic led by God-fearing leaders placed in power by a moral society led by an effective Church.
- We are expendable only existing to encourage the Church while understanding that someday our organization will no longer be needed. (Mark 11:17)
Inform, connect, and mobilize a growing community of people praying for the nation.
CONCERNING THE MANNER IN WHICH WE WILL ACCOMPLISH THE VISION, WE BELIEVE:
- God specifically calls some to a ministry that focuses on praying for the nation, while requiring all at some level to pray for leaders.
- Effective intercession requires a prophetic perspective, hearing the voice of the Lord through the leading of the Holy Spirit, coupled with vetted, strategic information, never presented in a sensational manner.
- There is an enemy of our souls and our nation that orchestrates a coordinated battle plan that is discernable and beatable with spiritual weapons. (2 Cor. 10:3-6)
- Passion and boldness for prayer is stoked by collective times of prayer, praying as if the course and destiny of America hangs in the balance.
- We constantly need to be seeking God’s perspective and interests for our nation: what is good, what is bad, and what He cares about most.
- Collective fasting on the first Friday of every month is the single most unifying action the community does together.
- The Body of Christ has many expressions, and while embracing a charismatic expression, we desire to fellowship with all who hold to orthodox, scriptural Christianity. (Rom. 12:18)
- In the midst of building community, God is looking for those who will stand in the gap and intercede on behalf of the land. ( 22:30)
Prayerful, Truthful, Generous, Hopeful, and Relational
WE WILL BE KNOWN AS:
- Spread the passion that God releases His power through prayer
- Believe in the power and importance of prayer that is Spirit-inspired and based on Scripture
- Be watchful and discerning in prayer with a sense of urgency and desperation
- Be a team who prays in faith
- Provide spiritual truth to the world
- Vet carefully and produce with excellence all our resources
- Express integrity and effective stewardship in all we do
- Have a humble spirit in our interactions with others without promoting ourselves
- Share our resources with whomever requests them
- Rejoice in being servants with an outward focus in support of the local church
- Convey the great Hope that Jesus freely offers
- Champion God’s perspective and His desires for our nation
- Encourage others through prophetic perspective and strategic insight
- Build faith with all with whom we come in contact
- Build community among intercessors to foster more intercession
- Create an environment among intercessors that inspires and encourages them
- Value healthy relationships as foundational to our ministry
Board of Directors
Carolyn Beckett has been blessed to be a public school teacher for twenty-four years and was in her district seven days a week with sporting and after-school events, and extra-curricular activities. She started Young Life and Wyldlife in the same district. For over 20 years, Carolyn has had the unique privilege of stewarding the Lord’s resources to help saints extend the Kingdom of God. Years ago, she began training service and therapy dogs. Close to a hundred dogs later, including several litters in her home, this work is still a deep passion. She has witnessed the lives of autistic kids, special needs individuals and veterans transformed as they have experienced Christ’s unconditional love through the heart of a dog. Carolyn’s current heart cry is to live Ps 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.”
John Beckett served as chairman of the Board of Directors from 1988 to June 2010 and as president of Intercessors for America from 1976 to 1988. He is an original board member. He is also the chairman of R.W. Beckett Corp, a worldwide leader in the manufacturing and sales of engineered components for residential and commercial heating. A 1960 graduate from M.I.T., he joined his father in the small family-owned business in 1963 and became president in 1965 after his father’s death. The company, with its affiliates, currently has sales exceeding $100 million and more than 700 employees. Mr. Beckett also is a founding board member of The King’s College in New York City, serves on the Board of Campus Crusade for Christ, International, and is a director of Graphic Packaging Corporation, a NYSE-listed manufacturing company. He has long been active in church and community-related activities and an advocate for integrating faith into the workplace. He has written two books about the subject, Loving Monday: Succeeding in Business Without Selling Your Soul (published in 1998 and currently available in 14 languages) and Mastering Monday: A Guide to Integrating Faith and Work (published in 2006). He has been named “Christian Businessman of the Year” by Christian Broadcasting Network (1999) and manufacturing “Entrepreneur of the Year” by Ernst & Young (2003). Mr. Beckett has also received an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Spring Arbor University (2002) and The King’s College (2008). He and his wife, Wendy, reside in Elyria, OH and have six children and fifteen grandchildren. Visit beckettcorp.com.
Jeffrey Coors has served as Chairman for the Board of Directors since June 2010. A graduate from Cornell University with a B.S. (1967) and M.A. (1968) in Chemical Engineering, Mr. Coors is chairman of Fiskeby Holdings US LLC, which operates a paper mill in Norrköping, Sweden. He retired as executive vice chairman of Graphic Packaging Corporation (NYSE: GPK) at the end of 2007 after serving as executive chairman from August 2003 until July 2006. Mr. Coors was chairman, president, and CEO of Graphic Packaging International from 1997 to 2003. He was also CEO of its predecessor company, ACX Technologies, from its inception in 1992. Prior to ACX, Mr. Coors enjoyed a 25 year career with Adolph Coors Company which encompassed a broad range of management responsibilities, including board member (1975-1992), president (1983-1988) and chairman and CEO of Coors Technology Companies (1986-1992). Throughout his career, Mr. Coors has taken an active role in civic, educational and business organizations and also serves on the boards of Free Congress Foundation, Mercy Ships, John Hopkins Medicine Board of Advisors, Hillsdale College, Independence Institute, and the Adolph Coors and Castle Rock Foundations. He is past chairman of the Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry. He and his wife, Lis, reside in Golden, CO and have six children and eight grandchildren. Visit graphicpkg.com.
Lee Corder is the senior vice president for Young Life International Division in the northern hemisphere. For 20 years, he was Senior Chaplain for the NFL’s Washington Redskins and is now Chaplain Emeritus. In the past, Dr. Corder has served Young Life as U.S. senior vice president, international director overseeing Europe and Africa, regional director of the Commonwealth region, and area director in both Maryland and Virginia. His education includes graduation from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in Government, a Masters of Divinity degree from Fuller Theological Seminary, and a Doctorate of Ministry from Columbia Seminary. Dr. Corder is ordained in the Presbyterian Church (USA). He and his wife, Paula, have four children and live in Arlington, Virginia. Visit his work: younglife.org.
Cynthia Dunbar is an American patriot of Native-American descent. She is the National Committeewoman to the RNC for VA, author, public speaker, attorney and CEO of Momentum Instruction, LLC. Formerly she was an elected member of the Texas State Board of Education, Assistant Professor of Law, Advisor to the Provost of Liberty University, appellate attorney, and Vice President of Curriculum and Instruction for Global Educational Ventures. Dunbar is a contributing Professor for Constituting America. In addition to IFA she serves on the Boards of Directors of Faith 2 Action, Source for Women, Oil & Wine, Youth Can Lead, Amigos de Dios, and Merryfield Orphanage. Her policy and academic writings have been published in various publications including William & Mary’s Journal of Women and the Law, Washington University’s John C. Danforth Center on Religion & Politics, Constituting America, Newsmax, and the Liberty Legal Journal. In 2008 Professor Dunbar released her book, One Nation Under God, which underscores the Judeo-Christian heritage of our nation. Her most-recent publication, Attributes of America, was released in 2015 and is a primer on our Constitutional Republic.
Sally Fesperman and her husband, Jay, founded a full-time ministry in 1970, the Inn of Last Resort/Christian Training Center International (CTCI). They operated it together until Jay’s death in 1992. Sally has remained actively involved in the ministry and serves with Larry and Susan Pons in overseeing CTCI’s programs and outreaches. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Derek Prince Ministries International and Intercessors for America.
Dave Kubal has led Intercessors for America as President/CEO for over a decade. Before this, he was employed as a Vice President for Fellowship of Christian Athletes. A recognized national ministry leader, he serves on the boards of the National Prayer Committee and the National Day of Prayer. His broad and visionary understanding of ministry developed from earning degrees at Wright State University and Asbury Theological Seminary and ordination in the Evangelical Presbyterian Church. He has written several books on prayer and fasting and articles published in Christianity Today, Charisma, and others. David, and his wife Kris, reside in Virginia with their three children.
Guy Kump was formerly the Executive Director of Intercessors for America, July 1976 to April 1985. He served as the pastor of a church in Elyria, OH from June 1985 until January 2000. Guy has often traveled internationally since December 1985 to pray for and to proclaim the prophetic word of God, specifically as it relates to Israel and the Jewish people. He resided in Jerusalem from May 2003 until August 2015 where he served as part of the leadership of Intercessors for Israel and Succat Hallel, a 24/7 praise, prayer and proclamation center. Today Guy resides with his wife Sarah in Concord, NC from where they continue to travel and minister as the Lord leads.
Paul McGraw is the President of Hope Industrial Systems, Inc. (HIS), a manufacturer of ruggedized computer monitors and touchscreens for the world-wide factory floor market. Paul earned an undergraduate degree in Psychology from Ohio University and an MBA from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. He founded HIS in 2000 after a 30-year career in computer and technology companies including IBM and Rockwell International. He and his wife Janet live in Roswell, GA and have three sons and three grandchildren. Visit HopeIndustrialSystem.com.
Cort Randell serves as secretary for the Board of Directors. Mr. Randell is an experienced entrepreneur. He has founded a number of successful businesses, including the National Student Marketing Corporation and the Federal News Service in 1985, which grew to the fourth largest newswire in the U.S. He and his wife, Joan, reside in Fairfax, Virginia.
Jeremy Story is the president of Campus Renewal Ministries, a national and international ministry serving as a catalyst to convene students and college ministers in united prayer and action to transform college campuses and students. A proud graduate of the University of Texas, God gave him this vision while he was a student. Over the past twenty years, he has traveled across the nation to forty states and five continents to work with, encourage, and train Christian ministry and church leaders on college campuses. God has given him a strong desire for mobilizing prayer movements, college students, simple church planting, and uniting Christian leaders. Mr. Story is well versed in church history, revival history, and transformational stories of what God is currently doing across the world. He and his wife, Jenny, reside in Austin, Texas and have five children. Visit campusrenewal.org.
Larry Tomczak is an apostolic leader and evangelist with 35 years of ministry experience. He led People of Destiny International (now under a different ministry name and leadership), a
pioneering church planting movement which has established almost 60 churches in the U.S. and abroad. Mr. Tomczak was editor of People of Destiny magazine and his books include the best sellers, Clap Your Hands, Church Planters Handbook (co-author), and Divine Appointments and Reckless Abandon. He was an instructor at the Brownsville Revival School of Ministry and former senior pastor at Christ the King Church of Atlanta, which recently was turned over to his son. Mr. Tomczak serves as director of International Center for Evangelism, Church-planting and Prayer (ICECAP), a ministry that equips Christians in New Testament evangelism and church-planting, fueled by prayer, through instruction, mentoring and application so graduates return to their “home base” inspired and prepared for effective ministry. He and his wife, Doris, have four children and reside near Nashville, TN. Visit larrytomczak.com.
Retired from the Board of Directors
Gary Bergel served as president of Intercessors for America from 1988 to April 2009 and as senior editor and president emeritus from April 2009 to June 2010. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, with a B.S. (1966 Biology / Secondary Education) and a M.A. (1969 Fine Art / Mixed Media), he has worked with IFA in various capacities since its founding in 1973. In 1985, Rev. Bergel was named executive director as the IFA national offices were moved to the Washington, DC area. He served as CEO from 1985 until David Kubal’s appointment in 2009. He stands as a spiritual “watchman” and senior editor in the ministry, writes for the monthly First Friday Prayer Letter, and speaks at conferences and seminars. He authored and designed the full-color dual booklet, When You Were Formed in Secret / Abortion in America, first published by IFA in 1980 with over 3 million copies distributed. The booklet, which contains remarks by former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop, Dr. James Dobson, and prominent African American leaders, Dr. Mildred Jefferson and Kay Cole James, has been released in Hebrew, Russian, Spanish, German, Canadian, Australian, and Arabic versions and is being readied for publication in the Middle East. Mr. Bergel serves on the executive level of America’s National Prayer Committee and as a U.S. member of the International Prayer Council. He has chaired the Prayer Committee of Prison Fellowship’s Operation Starting Line and is a member of the National Network of Youth Ministries, the National Committee of Mission America, the 2008 Advisory Council for TheCall, DC, and the Editorial Advisory Board for Pray! Magazine. Mr. Bergel also partners with Native American church leaders and evangelists, church planters, pastors, and community development leaders in Israel, the Middle East, Haiti, and West Africa. He and his wife, Susan, reside in Charles Town, West Virginia, and have ten children, including two adopted daughters, and eleven grandchildren.
Jimmy Owens and his wife are among the pioneers of Contemporary Christian Music and the modern worship movement. They are Grammy and Dove nominated composers of some 250 published and recorded songs, including 12 musicals. Mr. and Mrs. Owens are the founders of the School of Music Ministries International. Like their earlier well-known works, If My People and Come Together, an intercessory cantata, Heal Our Land, has been performed in many city-wide events and is widely embraced by the church in many nations. They have recently published the book, “Restoring a Nation’s Foundation” that is available through IFA’s eBookstore. Before specializing with his wife in songwriting and teaching, Mr. Owens was a church minister of music and an arranger/conductor for two TV series and many albums on most major Christian labels. He and his wife, Carol, currently reside in Costa Mesa, California. Visit jimmyandcarolowens.com.
David “Mac” McQuiston is one of the few people who has had the opportunity not only to witness the development of some of the greatest institutions of our time, but also to be a pivotal part of that growth as well. Since his graduation from Indiana Wesleyan University in 1965, Mr. McQuiston has been involved in World Wide Pictures in association with Billy Graham. He has served as Senior Vice President of Insight for Living, one of today’s most recognized worldwide ministries, established by Chuck Swindoll. In addition, he has served as Senior Vice President of Development for Walk Thru the Bible Ministries, another of today’s foremost discipleship ministries. The centerpiece of his notable career in ministry has been Focus on the Family. Today Focus on the Family is arguably the world’s most widely recognized family ministry. The Focus on the Family daily broadcast is heard on almost 2,000 U.S. radio affiliates and dozens more worldwide, reaching hundreds of millions every week. Since Focus’ unassuming beginnings in 1977, Mr. McQuiston has been a key participant in the growth of this international ministry. He began work with Focus at its inception in 1977. He was one of the original board members and was a signatory of the Focus on the Family incorporation. He later became Vice President of Administration and Development. Mr. McQuiston was key in the launch of Dr. James Dobson’s City Wide Seminars in 1977 and Dr. Dobson’s first film series in 1978. In June of 2005, the CEO Forum became its own entity after spending ten years as a division of Focus on the Family. He serves as CEO/President. The CEO Forum serves to advance the kingdom of God through the development of spiritual statesmen among senior executives of major corporations, through education, mentoring, and “safe relationships” among peers. Participants of the Forum include CEOs of Fortune 1000 companies. He and his wife, Karen, have two daughters and four grandchildren.
Founding Board Members – Deceased
Rev. Ern Baxter
Mr. Jay Fesperman Mr. George Gillies
Mr. John Heard
Mr. Warren Black
Mr. John G. Talcott, Jr.