The Almighty Lord, who is a strong tower to all who put their trust in him, to whom all things in heaven, on earth, and under the earth bow and obey: Be now and evermore your defense and make you know and feel that the only Name under heaven given for health and salvation ins the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen. (Book of Common Prayer, p. 456)
Healing, also known as Unction, is one of the seven traditional sacraments of the Church. In this sacrament, holy oil is as a sign and means of healing. Our healing service takes place every Wednesday at 10am. Prayers, anointing, and laying-on-of-hands are offered for all who desire it. The Sacrament of Healing is followed by the Eucharist. The whole service lasts for 30-40 minutes.
What is healing prayer?
“I prayed really hard for my mother to get better, but she did not. What went wrong? Did I not believe enough? Did my mother not have enough faith?”
Much confusion surrounds the purpose of healing prayer. We want so much for healing to happen, and when it does not, we wonder what went wrong with us or with our prayer. Or is it that God doesn’t answer prayer after all?
We must begin our consideration with Jesus. Reading his story, we can see that while the Bible tells us that he healed many people, not one of those people are still with us to testify to the experience. If Jesus’ healing prayer and touch did not grant perfect health for all time, why do we insist that our prayers will? If the purpose of healing prayer is to defeat all illness and death itself, then in the end we will be disappointed.
As Christians, we must always remember that our hope does not depend on the things of this earth. While God’s will is for health and salvation, God’s will is not always done in this world. We pray, not to convince God to fix things for us, but so that we will be aware of what God is already doing. There are many other types of healing besides physical, just as life itself is more than physical.
Healing prayer invites God into the situation of our lives. Prayer does not dictate how God is present, however. We wait to see his blessings, knowing that salvation is present in any situation, but perhaps not as we imagined it. Join us in offering these prayers and in seeing and giving thanks for the many ways we are blessed.
If you have prayer requests to be offered at the Healing Service, email: firstname.lastname@example.org