Since 2000 Anglican clergy have been explicitly encouraged to take on a commitment towards healing. The Church of England issued a report on the ministry of healing called ‘A Time to Heal’, which encouraged every parish church in the country to adopt the practice.
‘Faith healing’ can be a controversial subject, and some evangelist preachers have been accused of making unscrupulous claims that do not stand up to scrutiny. The report said where physical healing does not take place, people still have a need to try an emotional, psychological or spiritual approach. It warned that there is nothing predictable about faith healing - except the assurance of God's love and care and that the healing ministry is one of the greatest opportunities the Church has for 'sharing the Gospel'.
In the churches here at Gamlingay Hatley, and Everton, we have always wanted operate a ministry of pastoral care and support for those who need it and we have recently felt a need to revise our own commitment to a healing ministry. With that in mind we have been in consultation with the Diocese of Ely and have undertaken training to prepare ourselves to run some healing services as part of our regular pattern of worship. There will be a series of sermons throughout May about healing and there will be a special healing service on Sunday 31st May at 10am at St Mary’s Gamlingay; everyone is welcome to attend.
My own experience of prayers and healing is that we can’t expect miracles, but neither should we rule them out; what we can expect is that prayers for healing can at least make a difference. The root of any form of healing is prayer and it’s my prayer that our communities will be place of hospitality and healing to all those who live and work here.
Revd Steven Rothwell