Zondervan releases Common Prayer mobile app to connect 38K Christian denominations


Mobile users who pray together stay together.

At least that’s the idea behind the new Apple iOS mobile and tablet Common Prayer app, developed by Christian social activists and New Monasticism church leaders Shane Claiborne and Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove and released by Grand Rapids publishing company Zondervan.

The Common Prayer app is designed for both the spiritual and the searcher as a daily devotional that allows users around the world to participate in common prayers simultaneously.

The hope of the app’s creators is that communal prayer could break down divisive church barriers and unite the more than 38,000 Christian denominations together through prayer for each other and for the world.

The app allows users to access regular prayers and songs throughout each day.

  • Morning prayers: 365 prayers; one for each morning of the year.
  • Mid-day prayer: One prayer to pray during the day throughout the year.
  • Evening prayers: Seven prayers; one for each night of the week.
  • Occasional prayers: Multiple prayers to be used on special occasions like holidays and gatherings.
  • Songbook: Collection of best-loved songs of faith from all around the world.

Before its mobile makeover, “Common Prayer” started out as the title of a book co-authored by Claiborne and Wilson-Hartgrove.

The book, which served as the inspiration for the app, is self-described as a “tapestry of daily prayers inviting faith communities around the world to pray, sing and act together. . . . There are also songs from various traditional hymns, Mennonite gathering songs, and Taize chants — a ‘greatest hits’ from the church’s first 2,000 years.”

Claiborne is the author of the popular spiritual-activist book, “Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical,” along with “Jesus for President,” both of which were released by Zondervan.

Wilson-Hartgrove, a graduate of Eastern University in Philadelphia and Duke Divinity School, is the author of multiple spiritual books. He serves as associate minister at St. John’s Missionary Baptist Church and as director of the School of Conversion, a nonprofit education and formation center in Durham, N.C.

The Common Prayer app can be purchased at Apple's App Store.

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