Prayer chains that were once confined to a congregation or a close circle of friends are now being circulated throughout the world over the Internet, causing new concerns about privacy in the process.
The Dallas Morning News (April 30) reports that prayer requests that are posted on religious web sites are easily circulated to other web sites through links and also via e-mail reaching a global following. Those doing the praying, and some of the prayed-for, praise the cyber-prayer chains, saying that the more people praying the stronger the effect.
But others say these chains are “whipping the most private aspects of people’s lives from site to site around the World Wide Web, often without their consent,” writes Barbara Carton. Such popular prayer sites as are found on Beliefnet.com list the full names of those making the requests.