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More and more pastors are recognizing the need for more prayer throughout their congregation but are they recognizing their need to build a team who will support them in prayer?

Have you seen any successful pastoral prayer support teams?

What are the barriers to building a strong, safe (confidential), effective prayer team for the pastor?

What ultimately motivates a pastor to call for prayer support?

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Phil --

Speaking from my experience, pastors (including myself) are hesitant to ask for a prayer support team. Humility, discomfort with calling attention to themselves, etc. may all play a part. Also, prayer support requires ultimate and total trust, so the team would, I think, need to be quite small.

To call for one, I think there would be two factors: a recognized need (perhaps something out of the ordinary, dramatic, and urgent) and the trust factor I just described.

A culture of prayer in the church is also a large factor -- how much of that culture is there, what would be needed to develop it.

2 cents....

We have a good one covering me and my family, but feel strongly that we need to ramp it up significantly. We're looking for 24/7 coverage... 186 people taking an hour a week maybe... not sure how we're gong to put it together.

We'd love any thoughts and ideas on this.

We're also looking for 1000 intercessors for the Detroit area.

One thing that's key is communication. We don't simply want people that pray... but we need to connect at least weekly... to compare notes, hear about dreams and visions, compare prophetic data, etc.
Have you read Peter Wagner's "Prayer Shield"? He talks about having there (if I remember correctly) groups of prayer supporters, each requiring a higher level of trust ...
Yes. I have some awesome i1 intercessors and several i2's. It's working very well. The i1's are continually sharing dreams and visions with me, praying for our family directly.

Both teams have a weekly conference call to discuss the specific prayer points I send to each... and then they pray together and compare notes. The call usually takes an hour or so.

We want to ramp it up significantly though... finding 24/7 coverage just for us is a challenge. I'm sure several out of the 1000 that will emerge at some point in Detroit will fall into the i1 ranks.
I have a wonderful prayer support resource in the leader of my intercessory team in my church. When we first talked about the vision of providing prayer support with a team, I strongly encouraged her to "hound" me about getting specific requests related to me personally, my family and the ministries I am involved in. The prayer support of the team is an invaluable asset to me. I don't recommend ministry without it!
Pastors don't think about needing a prayer support team. I think because they are used to being the support for their congregation. It's probably not something taught in seminary. I think the one started in our church was because a prayer warrior saw the need and brought it to the pastoral staff's attention.

I lead a prayer support team for our worship pastor. I take the initiative to get prayer requests from him on a regular basis, usually weekly, and then email them to the team. We've had the blessing of seeing God move in direct relation to our prayers. I think one of the keys to success is that the lead person of the team has to take the initiative. If you wait on the pastor to give you the requests, it just won't be very regular. The way we do it, the team is reminded on a weekly basis to pray for Kevin. Being regular is key.

I actually blogged about this topic on my page. If you have time, take a look and share your thoughts. I'll be adding to it as God allows me to.
One of the barriers, I think, is confidentiality. Pastors must have enough discernment to pick the right people to be on the team and not just let someone come running in with a man made idea. I have just started a prayer team for my pastor, but it is a process which requires a building of trust and dedication of the time to make it happen within the Pastor and team leader schedule. The Lord showed us that we needed to start with 7 people and I believe He picked the people personally. Small beginnings are better than no beginnings at all! Email is the best route for us so far. I know that we have seen answers to our prayers and that alone is encouragement enough to keep it going.

 Over the past 10 years, I have noticed an increasing number of pastors seeking prayer from its congregation for general prayer needs, and enlisting confidential prayer concerns (that are intimate) to a small group of 3 people. 


As a former prayer coordinator of a mega-church in Georgia, I established a “weapons of warfare” prayer team, consisting of 5 warriors, that was specifically assigned to develop specific prayer objectives for our pastor, based upon the Word of God,  and we targeted our prayers for specific and general needs for our pastor and pastoral support.  We also had a group of 5 pastoral intercessors that met every Saturday night to pray for 2 hours to pray during the same time the pastor was studying and conducting preparation for his sermons on Sundays.

Many pastors desire to establish prayer teams but the biggest barrier is trust, or a unwillingness for a congregation to move in the direction of the vision of the church.

Based upon my observation, family pressures, increased ministerial and community responsibilities as well as spiritual warfare are the driving forces that enable a pastor to lead in corporate prayer. 


It is very vital that any prayer initiatives be conducted in conjunction with prayer teachings of various levels on the different types of prayer (Ephesians 6:18), because in all of our getting, we must have understanding and wisdom.



Stan, I love that idea about the "weapons of warfare" team! I also appreciate your insight on needing wisdom and understanding regarding the various levels or types of prayer.Our pastors focus very much on Scripture-based praying, which has been so rich for us as a congregation.


I would appreciate any resources you've found that have helped you as a prayer coordinator for your church - books, favorite Bible passages, teachings, etc. I'm currently not leading the prayer team for my worship pastor, as the Lord called me to lay it on the altar back in October. (It was probably one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make.) I know He will restore it to me at some point, and so part of this season is about learning how I can be more effectively used by the Lord in that role.


Thank you for sharing your insight!

Hi Jennifer,


Thank you for your comments regarding my note and “may the Lord give you increase more and more” (Psalm 115:14) in everything God has purposed for you. 


There are several resources that has helped me in terms of books and prayer conferences, but as I reflect, the most valuable resource has been the encouraging network of prayer warriors that the Lord has aligned me to walk with over the past 10 years.  I try to make it a habit to ask other warriors to pray for me, as I pray for them, because we all need prayer and the Lord’s wisdom in our everyday walk with Him.  God has called us into community and we all encourage one another.


Through the years, here is a few of several books that continue to be a tremendous resource for me in my personal growth and during prayer leadership, teaching and training initiatives.


Fresh Encounters – Daniel Henderson with Margaret Saylar

Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire – Jim Cymbala

One Year Book of Praying through the Bible – Cheri Fuller

Prayer that Brings Revival – David Yonggi Cho

The Power of Personal Prayer – Jonathan Graf

Possessing The Gates of The Enemy – Cindy Jacobs

Praying the Scriptures – Judson Cornwall

Intercession – Thrilling and Fulfilling – Joy Dawson

Knowing God through Fasting – Elmer Towns

The Celebration of Discipline – Richard Foster

Watchman Prayer – Dutch Sheets


“If you abide in me and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will and it shall be done unto you.”  (John 15:7)  I appreciate your prayers and the prayers of others who desire to pray God's perfect will for my life, my family and sphere of influence.  Thank you for your prayers!



i was talking to one of the leaders from TABLE 71 when they held their meeting in hawaii last week.  their large organization had just hired a full time employee at going wage to create more prayer for their organization.  i commended him, and also encouraged him that he was on the cutting edge--people are figuring out where the power is


ps on feb 11 i turned 68--pray for me in my youth

ps--anyone read david benners OPENING TO GOD?  comments?

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