“God, I need your help tonight.
Beneath the noise
Below the din
I hear your voice
In science and in medicine
“I was a stranger
You took me in.””
U2, “Miracle Drug” 1
Father Dan Tutonof Hope+in+the+Desert Episcopal Church in Albuquerque finds inspiration in U2’s song, “Miracle Drug.” Bono’s lyrics and the active ministries of Hope+in+the+Desert proclaim in shared voice the healing expressed in the gospel of Matthew. 2
Members of Hope+in+the+Desert believe that healing is one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. However, according to Fr. Dan, we must realize that we “do not enact the healing ourselves.” As he explains, “We’ve vessels of God’s healing through the Holy Spirit.”
“Jesus left his church with the responsibility to carry on his ministry until his return. This includes being entrusted with a healing ministry” he asserts.
What service can individuals provide in a healing ministry? Hope+in+the+Desert trains prayer partners to intercede in healing prayer for others. The church offers a weekly prayer group and private prayer appointments for ongoing prayer needs. Such needs may include physical healing and healing of memories and traumas.
They also have monthly prayer and healing services in the style of Taizé. At Taizé services, “a prayer team will pray with and for those who ask for prayer. The prayer team may also feel led to pray for other things discerned to be related to the person’s physical healing needs. If there is limited time to discuss a person’s concerns, the team may ask the Lord to intervene as he will.”
For people who prefer silence and contemplation, Taizé services provide an atmosphere of nourishment and healing. “The Lord is gracious and loves us in many ways—where we’re at and in ways that fit us. For those who engage in contemplation, the Holy Spirit would bring healing into their hearts through silence.”
During more intensive, scheduled prayer sessions, team members “may feel led by the Spirit to offer suggestions or advice to a person. They may also pray about something related to the person’s concern.” Fr. Dan explains that this intervention is done “carefully and cautiously by parishioners who have received training in intercessory prayer and understand how to show discernment.”
In addition to these healing ministries, what about utilizing other methods, the “science and medicine” alluded to in Bono’s lyrics? While he is hesitant to refer people to healing techniques he does not know about, he believes “all truth is God’s truth.” “Practicing ways of healing that are not discouraged in scripture would include Eastern and Western forms of medicine.”
“We have created a dichotomy between physical and spiritual means of healing, but all of these means are under God’s sovereignty and power. Therefore, if we can find healing through appropriate means, it is legitimate. All healing truth is God’s healing truth.”
In the next article, we will discuss the expectations of prayer and how they can impact healing.
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Father Dan and Deacon Jane Ross invite people to come to this beautiful and caring church. For more information, you may call them at 505-830-0572, or you may visit the church website at http://www.hopepiscopal.org/index.html .
1Lyrics from “Miracle Drug,” as quoted at http://www.sing365.com/music/lyric.nsf/Miracle-Drug-lyrics-U2/1CFE4AA47B59A1AE48256F20000648D2
Additional note: For more background and information on Christian healing, you may go to articles on Father Ads Lovekin at http://joltleft.com/spirituality-in-albuquerque/father-adams-lovekin-episcopal-priest-albuquerque .