Churches are re-embracing the idea that part of their ministry is to bring healing to people. They recognize that, as in the miracles of Jesus, healing a sickness of the body or mind, a sickness in relationships or a community sickness is a pathway towards ushering in the Shalom and Harmony of God in the world.
In the churches she visited, Butler Bass saw mainline Protestants laying hands on and anointing someone with a physical illness. She saw a woman exercising and training others in the practice of Reiki. She saw churches offering food, clothing, education and resources to heal the wounds of poverty. And she saw churches intentionally reaching out to heal divisions based on race, class and orientation. They have understood that the practice of healing is connected deeply to the work of God’s salvation of all humanity.
One of the key identifiers of Seventh-day Adventists is our mission to help people achieve physical, mental and spiritual wholeness through encouraging healthful ways of living that enhance the body-mind-soul connection to God and others. Healing is part of Adventist heritage.
- How does the health and wholeness message of Seventh-day Adventism become relevant again in a society that has embraced most of what this denomination was teaching over 125 years ago?
- In what ways have you seen Adventists and the broader Christian community be wound-ers instead of healers?
- What new ways of healing do Adventists need to incorporate into its denominational and congregational life?
- What in our world is in the most desperate need of healing?