A new prayer post feature is being tested on Facebook that will allow members of Facebook groups to ask for and respond to prayer requests.
The move by the social media giant was confirmed to the Religion News Service. "Our mission to give people the power to build community extends to the world’s largest community; the faith community," Nona Jones, head of Global Faith Partnerships at Facebook, said in a written statement to RNS."
"As a local church pastor with my husband, I know very well how disruptive the last year has been for people of faith and the houses of worship that serve them," Jones added. "This is why we are committed to finding ways to build the tools that help people connect to hope on Facebook."
The idea for prayer posts grew out of the many ways users have connected over Facebook while distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Jones.
The testing is taking place in a subset of groups in the United States, according to Facebook.
Group administrators must opt in to allow members to use the feature, they then have the option to post prayer requests in the group.
A pray button can be clicked to let the poster know their request will be committed to prayer. In addition they can also choose a reaction or leave a comment.