PsycCritiques, the book review journal of the APA, has a blog, and a recent post is about intercessory prayer. I discussed this in a previous entry here, as many Christians certainly consider intercessory prayer an important part of religious experience. But from a research perspective, the question can be asked what one can expect from treating it as something that can be manipulated in an empirical study. The brief review by Myers and Jeeves suggests benefits from physical touch and personal practice of prayer (in terms of cardio benefits, reduced stress, and so on), but not convincing evidence from studies in which prayer is conducted at a distance. They point out that there are many problems with attempts to manipulate/control these variables.