Many masses and prayer meetings that I attended when I was still a Christian involved prayer requests, which meant that members of the congregation put forward certain issues that they wanted the assembly to pray for. Quite often, such request would be along the lines of  “Mrs X is still struggling with cancer and she would like us to pray for her again” or “Mr X  still hasn’t managed to find a job”. Even as a believer, these requests and these unanswered prayers struck me as very peculiar.