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Summary

Does the economy influence the focus of believers' prayers and their publicly acknowledged graces? This paper offers some preliminary answers to this question. Using cointegration analyses on Catholic bulletins, we found that the composition of published graces varies according to the economic cycle – a higher unemployment rate, a lower real GDP growth rate and electoral periods lead to a higher number of graces focused on economic issues (as opposed to graces motivated by other concerns, such as health). These results contribute to the literature by providing evidence that the economic cycle also influences believers' prayers and publicly acknowledged graces.