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Church Prayer Lists

Do you believe in or see any validity in a church maintaining a prayer list? Do you believe having a prayer list is scriptural?

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 ---mima on 8/18/06
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I see nothing wrong with a prayer list. If we depend on the Holy Spirit alone to remind us, we're implying that we ALWAYS hear Him ( which is, of course, untrue).

Healing is only one of many things we might pray for. There are many worse things than sickness (worse things than death, in my opinion).A church whose prayer list is mainly a list of the sick, IMHO, shows that either their church is too large or their concern for others is too shallow.
---Donna2277 on 8/25/06


I believe we pray according to the Holy Spirit quickening us. Prayer lists are okay, but is the Holy Spirit quickening us to pray for this person's healing? How do we know if it's God's will to heal this person? Maybe Father wants Him home in heaven where there's no more tears, no sorrow, no pain or suffering.
We can pray for someone until the cows come home, but if that person isn't doing the will of God, they may remain in the state they are in. The prayers may be falling on deaf ears.
---Donna9759 on 8/22/06


Perhaps I should clarify what I meant when I said: "Hope we don't get to the place where a written, notorized permission is required." I meant, required before we can pray for someone.
---Donna2277 on 8/21/06


Yes, Madison, HIPPA requires ANY hospitalized patient to specify in writing if they will allow their hospitalization be disclosed (or to whom).
But reassigning personnel, as you describe, could not be done everywhere. If I worked at our small local hospital, it would be a rare day that all my patients would be strangers. If a church member was known to be hospitalized, I'd be besieged by questions (that I couldn't answer) at church. But nurses are in short supply. And reassigning me wouldn't help.
---Donna2277 on 8/21/06


When my son was in rehab, the person who answered the phone would say "I can neither confirm nor deny that person is here" unless my son signed a release to take my calls.
---Madison1101 on 8/20/06




Phil: My license is the reason I do not mix my church with my social work career. I can ask for prayer in general for my clients and patients. They are all mentally ill. They all need prayer. I work in psychiatric facilities. If a member of my church were to become a patient in my hospital, I would be forbidden to work on their unit, as I have a social/church relationship with them outside the facility. I could not even acknowledge seeing them there to anyone.
---Madison1101 on 8/20/06


Donna2277 The United Methodist Church as had their General Council write a policy paper on HIPPA compliance for their local churches The problem is that it is not a Civil Suit, It is a Federal Criminal conviction that can cost people their state occupational licences to practice in their professions. You simply don't want to risk your professional carrier by taking an action that could potentially get you in trouble. The legislation is poorly written and until it is changed people have to be careful.
---Phil_the_Elder on 8/20/06


Phil the Elder, I suppose you could be "sued" for praying for someone.(Prayer IS powerful). For confidiality, it's probably best to ask first, "Would you mind if I add your name to the prayer list at our church?" "My church would be happy to pray for you, if you'd like". (I've never had a refusal). Then reveal only bare essentials to the church. Hope we don't get to the place where a written, notorized permission is required. What kind of problem have you had with HIPPA?
---Donna2277 on 8/20/06


I would have thought that it would depend on HOW you acquired the knowledge that someone was ill. Some people will know because they are both a health worker and a personal friend or relative of that person. Passing on information that you would have known anyway would surely not be considered a breach of confidence just because you also know because of your profession. I hope that it wouldn't.
---emg on 8/20/06


My church maintains a prayer bulletin that is distributed weekly. In it we have the names of our deacons and the staff and their families. Each week we have the name of a government official, a police officer, and a college student from the congregation, along with their address, to pray for. We also have health concerns shared. We are a large church, and the list is long.
We also have a prayer chain for immediate prayer concerns. This goes out by e-mail to the congregation.
---Madison1101 on 8/19/06




I may not reveal any information about the patients or clients in my care with anyone outside of my employment situations. I can't even ask for prayer at church for general things like "I have a client who is diagnosed with __________ and needs prayer."

I can share requests for coworkers, and friends and the like. I do not work for my church. I would not work for my church as a therapist because of the duality of the relationships, and that is an ethical issue with me.
---Madison1101 on 8/19/06


Donna2277, that is one of the big problems with the HIPPA legislation, they criminalize what just used to be just an ethical concern. And identify individuals by category or labor and don't restrict it to a client/patient relationship. If you are aware if you are aware that Miss X, a friend is going in for minor surgery even though there is no client/patient relationship you can not lawfully pass on the information to others if you are in a covered labor category.
---Phil_the_Elder on 8/19/06


Phil the Elder---You must mean that health care/mental health workers cannot contribute information about their patients/clients. That's not just HIPPA, that's an ethical principle, confidential or privileged information, that's been the rule since way before HIPPA.

No reason a Christian professional shouldn't request prayer for friends, family or acquaintances.
---Donna2277 on 8/18/06


It's agood idea and as darlene says we are told to pray for one anohter in the bible.
But we need to take care with confidentiality, and probably only put someone on the list with their agreement, or even at their request. Details of their illness or other request should be published only if they agree.
---alan8869_of_UK on 8/18/06


No. I do not keep a prayer list. I believe in praying the minute the need is made known. I do like to have someone to agree with me in prayer, sometimes it's my wife other times it's my Soulwinning buddies.-- also I would like to mention that I have received word of a tremendous miraculous healing from cancer this very morning. Thank you Jesus thank you!!!
---mima on 8/18/06


I know it is scripture to pray. So I believe all churches should have a prayer list. For instance, what if something tragic happened in your family, well someone in the family would be on the phone and telling them to pray. In my church we have a prayer list and if something happens we pray right there on the phone, we don't wait until we hang up. Where two or three are gathered in his name God will move.
---Rebecca_D on 8/18/06


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Darlene, you are so right. We are to bear one anothers burdens. Phil the elder, you are way out again. I bet Madison bears prayer request with the rest of her church.
---shira on 8/18/06


Mima, do you?
---Katie on 8/18/06


Having a prayer list on the notice board of the church, or in the church newsletter is just a way of asking the church to pray for certain individuals. It is not much different from 'phoning around people and making prayer requests or asking people when we meet up with them. However, any information we give regarding why an individual needs prayer should be cleared by the person themselves (or family) otherwise requests should be kept simple e.g. 'for healing' 'for encouragement' etc.
---emg on 8/18/06


Be careful if church staff are also clinical counselors, there can be problems in the US with HIPPA privacy compliance. In general no one associated with medical/mental health care or health insurance can contribute information to such a list or comment on the status of any party in a concerns time at church. HIPPA is a peace of terrible legislation that need to be significantly rewritten. Our Veterans Home has lost track of resident that have been moved between multiple hospitals because of HIPPA privacy
---Phil_the_Elder on 8/18/06


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A prayer list is just a way or source that prayer warriors use to have specific people and specific needs can be addressed. Taking a list home is of no use if you do not pray. God knows our needs, but He tells us to ask. I have prayer requests sent by email, and we have intercessory pray Tuesday mornings at church to pray for those on the "list". When two or more gather, remember.
---Dottie on 8/18/06


why not have one? I keep ours on the fridge, and when I walk by I say a quick prayer that God will bless those on the list. I would never remember who needed prayer and what they needed it for.
---bethie on 8/18/06


The Bible tells us to pray for one another. It also says if you see a brother overtaken in a fault pray for him that he may be healed. I have been on what the ladies call prayer chains at church, and yes we even saw not only prayers answered but miracles happen in answer to those prayers. Prayer for one another is part of loving the family of God and showing the love of Christ.
---Darlene_1 on 8/18/06


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