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  • Mary Palinkos

Create a Prayer Altar at Home

Because of the pandemic, we continue to pray in our homes, cars, and other places—but not the pews. But if you’re sitting in the same spot on the couch whether praying or watching TV, you’re not helping yourself to enter a prayerful space.

“Don’t be anxious about anything; rather, bring up all of your requests to God in your prayers and petitions, along with giving thanks.” Philippians 4:6
Light-skinned, young hands hold a cross necklace and a brown, leather-bound Holy Bible on a wood tabletop.
Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels

In this anxious time, our relationship with God can be one of our central pillars (along with mental health, community, etc). One way to draw closer to God in our daily lives is to have a dedicated prayer space at home.

In a couple weeks, we’ll build prayer altars in our houses. You’re welcome, of course, to start now.

The easy part:

You don’t need a whole room, or even a whole table. Any dedicated space can become a prayer altar: a window sill, an end table, the top of a short bookshelf.

You also don’t need to leave it there forever. You could start with a Lent prayer altar. Maybe you can’t always spare one part of your kitchen counter, but it seems doable for 40 days?

The hard part:

There is no hard part! You already have everything you need, probably scattered across your home. The idea is that we’re gathering it together in an intentional way.

Poster is on a green-blue background, with white lettering and a photo of a candle in front of a brick wall. It says, "Create your own home prayer altar. Sunday, 2/14 ~11:15am at Zoom coffee hour, more at

Here are some suggestions for "ingredients," all of which are optional:

  • Something alive: a plant or fresh flowers

  • A candle with matches (not if little ones can reach them)

  • Something to that reminds you of God

  • Something to represent your family or community

  • Something to hold/touch

  • Fabric for underneath everything, maybe in a liturgically appropriate color

  • A Book of Common Prayer

  • A Bible

Gather these ingredients, and join us after 10:15am Zoom Morning Prayer on February 14! We’ll talk about the practice of building a prayer altar, discuss how to use our altars, and then start putting them together.


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