The Eucharist is a sign of the reality of what God has done for us in Jesus Christ. Every time we give ourselves afresh to him we receive his life (John 6:53-58). This is the “great exchange” (our sin for his righteousness, our brokenness for his Wholeness, our sickness and pains for his health).
So through the Eucharist we have already received God’s healing power. Yet sometimes there remains a burden on our heart for healing for ourselves or someone we love. Sharing that burden in confidence through prayer and if appropriate the laying on of hands is right and is fully supported through the scriptures.
The healing ministry of the Church is a Gospel imperative. Jesus commissioned his disciples to heal the sick: ‘Heal the sick who are there and tell them, The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ (Luke 10:9). Thus Jesus explicitly linked healing the sick with going out into the community to proclaim the coming of the Kingdom.
In chapter 8 of ‘A Time to Heal’, a Church House publication, it states “The wholeness and healing ministry is one of the greatest opportunities the Church has today for sharing the gospel. More than before in the last hundred years, many in our society realise there is a spiritual as well as a physical and a mental dimension to healthy living. ‘Wholeness’ is the in-word: it is what everyone longs for…”
Consequently the response of Christian communities to people’s needs for healing is one of the most important ways in which the Gospel is proclaimed to contemporary society.
St Nicholas Arundel has explicitly offered a Wholeness and Healing Ministry since 2008 and eight lay members of the congregation are commissioned to that Ministry, supported by the Clergy. Every Sunday two of us go to receive communion and then move to the Lady Chapel and sit quietly, ready to pray for God’s Wholeness and Healing with you. You don’t need to say what you would like us to pray for if you don’t want to, nor do you need to pray out loud, after all God already knows what is on your heart. The Ministry is discreet, confidential and sensitive and we encourage you to use it.