Ministry of Healing

Our Ministry of Healing

 
Prayers for healing are offered at the following times:
 
At St Thomas' Church: 
  • On the 3rd Wednesday of each month at the 10.30am Eucharist 
At All Saints Church:
  • On the first Friday of each month at 7.00pm at a special, quiet service called        'First Friday : A Service of Healing and Wholeness' 
  • On the 2nd Sunday of the month immediately after the 10.00am Mass. (Volunteers will pray with you regarding any matter you wish, including prayers for healing)
  • On the 3rd Sunday of the month during the 'New Fire' Mass                              (Laying-on-of-hands and anointing with oil is offered in the St John's chapel during Communion.) 
 

We believe that God loves us and wants the very best for each of us; but we also know that suffering of various kinds and ultimately death are an unavoidable part of our human condition. In the person of Jesus, God shared in these experiences, and we believe that he draws close to us in times of suffering.

Jesus’ resurrection from the dead gives us hope that we might have a foretaste of God’s Kingdom here and now, and that through the Church’s ministry and the work of the Holy Spirit, we might experience his healing touch.

What form this healing might take, we do not know. We may simply feel a greater sense of God’s love, enabling us to cope better with our physical pain or emotional heartache. We may experience a slight improvement in some medical condition. More rarely, we may even experience a quite sudden and dramatic change in our physical or emotional health for which we immediately want to thank God.

It is important, however, to remember that healing is not principally about being physically ‘cured’, but is more about finding a greater sense of ‘wellbeing’ and a renewed trust in God’s unfailing love. 

Jesus told his apostles to ‘preach the Gospel……..and heal the sick’. In our healing services, the Church continues the ministry of Jesus Christ. In doing so, we recognise that we all need healing – the healing of ourselves, and of our relationships with God and with one another and with our environment.  

Finally, we seek to work in co-operation with the medical profession. The church’s healing ministry should be seen as complementing medical treatment and certainly not as an alternative to it.  

Even if after receiving Healing Ministry you feel you have experienced a significant improvement in a medical condition, you should consult your Doctor before discontinuing or changing any treatment or medication. This doesn’t mean that you are doubting God, but rather it’s a recognition that God also works and speaks through health professionals, and they are the people best placed to advise you on what you need to do.

 

More about "First Friday"  

Before the service

We try to create a quiet, prayerful atmosphere before the service begins.  Please respect this, and use the time to quietly reflect on where you need healing in your life and to bring these things prayerfully to God.  

Those who wish to do so have an opportunity to use the Sacrament of Reconciliation and make their confession to a priest. Being reassured of God’s forgiveness and letting go of past sins and failures can in itself bring a real sense of healing and joy, but if you don’t want to make your confession in this way, that’s fine because there will be a point in the service where we can all acknowledge our failures together and receive absolution. 

As the service begins, the Blessed Sacrament may be placed on the altar. This is a reminder of the presence of Christ and that it is he alone who heals us and not any individual priest or minister.         

How the ministry of healing is offered

During the service, intercessory prayers will be said for those who have asked our prayers (and given permission for their names to be used) and for all present.

Prayers for the healing of individuals who come forward for ministry  will be offered through the laying-on-of-hands and anointing with oil.

When you come up for the laying-on-of-hands, you may wish to briefly and quietly tell the minister(s) what it is you would particularly like healing. If you prefer not to do so, just remain silent or simply give them your name, if they don’t already know you.  The minister(s) will lay hands gently on your head and possibly on your shoulders in silence for a few moments, and may then say a simple prayer.  The priest will then anoint you with oil which has been blessed by the Bishop, making the sign of the cross on your forehead and on the palms of your hands and saying another short prayer. 

If you would like to know more about the healing ministry and how it might help you, or if you would prefer a priest to pray with you privately, please feel free to contact one of the clergy.

 
‚ÄčOur healing ministry has been developed in accordance with best practice as set out in the House of Bishops' report "A Time to Heal".