Pray!

Pray! development has been discontinued. To learn about exporting your requests, look here. For reasons why I am quitting, read on.

full screen of Pray! in detail view

Story

In early 2010 I was looking for an app to make my prayer life more organized. I couldn't find anything that met my criteria of simple and fast. Combine that with a desire to learn something new—in this case iOS development—and Pray! was born.

Pray! was released a couple of months before Christmas in 2010 at $1.99, because I thought $0.99 apps were too cheap. To celebrate Christmas, I made the app free over the iTunes Connect shutdown and came back to a few thousand downloads in just a week. I was wowed and kept the app free ever since. Over the next five years, Pray! would be downloaded over 45,000 times in dozens of countries all over the world.

The vast majority of downloads were from the US (~23,000), followed by China (~9,000) and Germany (~3,000). This diversity was probably the most encouraging thing about developing the app, together with the kind emails over the years. I also received several prayer request emails, which flattered me. I did not really intend the "Pray! Support" button in the app to work like that, though, so while I did pray for these requests, I renamed the button to make its purpose (technical support) more clear.

Many feature requests were implemented, but I started losing steam after a while and only found the occasional day or so to work on the app, leaving the two most requested features, iCloud sync and archiving of requests, together with many others, unfulfilled. That lack of time and all the new, awesome features that Apple releases for its developers, made me realize that I couldn't make the app the way I'd like without a significant time investment. Thus I decided in early 2015 to phase out Pray!.

I contacted Andy Geers, the developer of PrayerMate and pitched a few ideas to him. PrayerMate already supported export and import of requests via Dropbox, so I only had to make Pray! able to export its requests in PrayerMate's format, and things would be golden. Andy is a great guy and was very helpful and encouraging. The fact that it has taken so long to accomplish this is further confirmation that it is time to move on.

And there you have the whole story. I hope Pray! has been useful to you, and that PrayerMate would be even more useful (it does have a lot more features).

Soli Deo Gloria.

-Christoph

How to export your data into PrayerMate

Exporting your data from Pray! and into PrayerMate is quite straightforward. The only caveat is that Reminders unfortunately don't map into how PrayerMate does things, so they will be ignored during export and import. But Prayer Areas, Request titles, and details, will all be preserved.

    • 1. Open Pray!. Find the export icon on the bottom of the screen, in the middle.
    • 2. Tap it, and you will be presented with two options. Either email the exported requests to someone (like yourself), or use iTunes file sharing. We will discuss both options below.
    • 3.1 Tap "Export via Email"

      It will open an email dialog with an attached file called "PrayExport.json."

      Enter any email address in the To field and send the email.

      Open the email and save the attached file somewhere for now.

    • 3.2 Tap "Export via iTunes"

      That's it! It's now saved in your Pray! documents directory, which you can access via iTunes.

      Open iTunes and go to your phone (you may have to plug it in).

      Select Apps and scroll down to the "File Sharing" section.

      Find Pray! in the list and select it. You will now see a few files in the list on the right.

      Drag and drop the PrayExport.json file somewhere for now.

Now follow the instructions here to import your data into PrayerMate.

That's it! I hope all your data is now in PrayerMate! If you have any questions or problems, please email me and we'll figure it out.