Although I always thought that prayer=prayer=prayer, now I have discovered that I am wrong. Apparently, the prayers of a person who has mortally sinned are not the same as the prayers of a person in the state of grace. The person with mortal sin cannot gain the merit of his or her prayer, is this correct? (I think that a prayer asking for forgiveness and mercy might be the exception.) If the prayers of said person cannot help himself, will the sinner's prayers for others be invalid also? Seems like a waste, but if it is true, what's the point?