Naomi Allen is the head of youth development for Open Doors in UK and Ireland. Open Doors originated in 1955, when a Dutchman, who later became known as Brother Andrew, started smuggling Bibles to the persecuted church in Communist Europe. The organisation seeks to bring resources and hope to the over 360 million Christians who suffer persecution and discrimination.



I’m normally someone who likes to be up and ready and at my desk by around 8:45…I wouldn’t say I’m a morning person as it definitely takes me a while to wake up, but I hate wasting the day!

So even with the challenge of Monday mornings I’m up and at my desk before 9am. Every day at Open Doors we have a time of sharing and prayer. On a Monday the focus is on gathering as our departmental teams – I’m part of the strategic relations team with our church relationship managers, the events team and Inspire team.

We will share updates from the weekend and previous week as well as hearing what God is doing in the life of one team member as we each have a chance to share. We pray for one of the 50 countries which appears on the Open Doors World Watch List and then get on with our days.

For me that looks like checking in with the people I manage, being updated about the progress of different projects and using Monday afternoons to write and feedback on resources we’re developing.

Mondays are also the day I play netball. Having recently got married and moved to a new city I’ve used this space to connect and build community as well as attempting a level of fitness.



Tuesday morning my team (the youth team) and the young adults team have a prayer time before the all-organisation prayer time to pray specifically for persecuted Christians we have learnt about that week. We are always being updated with new stories and situations and it’s easy to become slightly numb to it all.

Being intentional in prayer is our attempt to make sure that we aren’t just writing articles and resources from a disengaged space, but that we have allowed stories to impact and shape us and that we have integrity in asking people to pray.

Tuesdays are also the youth team meeting day, a chance to connect and catch up on what’s been happening. We chat social media and website, resources we’re developing, events and youth groups we’re visiting.



Wednesday is the day I drive to work in the Open Doors office – it’s an early start with my alarm going off at 5:20 to get ready for the two-and-a-half-hour drive. Most staff are present on Wednesdays, which makes it a great opportunity to connect relationally and to worship together.

This is how we spend the first hour of the morning. The rest of the day is spent in face-to-face meetings, filming for any social media needs and collecting resources for that week’s youth group visits.



On Thursdays, my team carve out 45 minutes to spend away from our screens listening to God about how we can best be serving young people in the UK and Ireland.

We have 30 minutes of listening and then feedback back together to ensure a level of accountability and also to encourage and clock any trends that are emerging. This is also the day when I try to organise networking meetings with youth workers and event leads. Locally, I’ll visit people but often times it’s a lot of online meetings.

Thursdays are also date night! The challenge of the two of us both having ministry jobs which require evening and weekend work means that we’ve had to diarise and protect specific time to enjoy quality connection.


Fridays I intentionally try to keep meeting free so I can do all the work from the week. It’s a day of fulfilling action points, catching up on e-mails, reviewing and signing off resources and writing session plans for the youth groups I will be visiting.

I often will be working on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings so I will be ensuring I have everything I need and am clear about what I’m delivering so that I don’t have to use my weekend time to do last-minute edits.

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Where I can, I try to make the most of doing the things I love – getting outside, seeing friends, adventuring, eating good food, reading books etc. When I’m working I’ll try to ensure I take time in the following week to do this as I had a nasty bout of glandular fever in 2021 and have recognised that I do have limitations to how much I can do without rest.


I am part of a house church that meets on Sunday afternoons and so Sunday mornings are often spent being quite lazy and doing the boring house jobs before gathering in someone’s home.

We worship, explore parts of the Bible, share communion and eat together every week. We’re trying to be a community that welcomes questions and doubts as we seek to learn from and model Jesus. I appreciate having a space where I can just be Naomi and not, Naomi from Open Doors.