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Service of the Word for Wholeness

This special worship service is offered on the 3rd Sunday of each month in the Chapel. But what is it? Why do we offer the Service of the Word for Wholeness?

Scripture strongly affirms ministries of spiritual healing. The root of the word healing in New Testament Greek, sozo, is the same as that of salvation and wholeness. Spiritual healing is God's work of offering persons balance, harmony, and wholeness of the body, mind, and spirit, as well as new relationships through confession, forgiveness, and reconciliation.

The New Testament records that Jesus himself healed the estranged and sick and sent out his disciples on ministries of healing. James calls us to pray for and anoint the sick, that they may be healed.

Are any among you sick? They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up, and anyone who has committed sins will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.

James 5:14–16a

All healing is of God. Healing is not magic, but is the underlying great mystery of God's love. God does not promise that we shall be spared suffering, but does promise to be with us in our suffering. God does not promise that we will be cured of all illnesses, but promises that we all must face the inevitability of death. The greatest healing of all is the reunion or reconciliation of a human being with God.

Our Congregation is empowered by the Word. The Word comes to us in baptism, confession and absolution, proclamation of the Word (preaching), Eucharist, and sharing of the Peace. Laying on of hands, anointing with oil, or simply holding someone's hand all show the power of touch, which plays a central role in the healings recorded in the New Testament. Jesus often touched others—blessing children, washing feet, healing injuries or disease, and raising people from death.

Anointing the forehead with oil is a sign invoking the power of God. The oil points beyond itself to the action of the Holy Spirit and the presence of the healing Christ, God's Anointed One.

All are invited: persons grieving after loss, going through divorce, suffering from

addiction or substance abuse, living with COVID or other life–threatening illness, needing strength to minister to others, a person with anxiety, stress, or in need of wisdom.

Join us and renew your baptism by anointing with oil, laying on of hands, prayer and fellowship of Christians.

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