The Daily Prayer podcast, which is also integrated into the free Daily Prayer app, brings listeners together twice a day for short traditional services of Morning and Evening, usually led by the Revd Catherine Williams from Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire.
The podcast, available both via the Daily Prayer app as well as all major podcasting platforms, has had just under a quarter of a million unique listeners since launching.
The atmospheric services follow the pattern set out in the Church of England’s Common Worship services, with readings recorded by people around the country and music from St Martin’s Voices, one of the choirs of St Martin-in-the-Fields in London.
The podcast, which was launched in March 2021, has now registered more than 1,000,000 downloads, with around 8,000 people listening a day.
Traditionally, the daily cycle of prayer was most associated with monastic communities but during the pandemic many more people have found support and a sense of belonging through online worship.
The Bishop of Exeter, Robert Atwell, who Chairs the Church of England’s Liturgical Commission, said:
"In an age of rapid fire content, Daily Prayer offers a more contemplative moment for individuals and groups to hear different voices, spoken and sung, bringing life to the texts of morning and evening prayer which have been recited for centuries.
"The rhythm of Daily Prayer made more accessible through this app has become a valued source of spiritual nourishment to people around the world."
"This audio service, available through a variety of platforms, has become an important resource for those who are visually impaired, or unable to get to church, among the tens of thousands for whom this has become a daily part of their pattern of prayer."
Daily Prayer is the latest in a series of prayer and discipleship apps and podcasts available from the Church of England.
Last year they were accessed eight million times, up 50 per cent on the previous year as the pandemic triggered a major change in the way Christians are worshipping.
Many cathedrals and local churches also broadcast morning and evening prayer as well as traditional services such as evensong, attracting a new virtual congregation both from their own communities and around the world.
The success of the Daily Prayer podcase comes after another podcast Time to Pray also passed the one million download mark since its launch at the start of the first lockdown in March 2020.