June 30, 2016
How to Do a Healing Touch Session
Over the past three years, I’ve seen firsthand how churches can support the healing of their communities in body, mind, and spirit. Illness can affect every aspect of people’s lives and profoundly wound their spirits. But a healing ministry can reassure people that they are loved and cared for, no matter what happens with the physical course of their disease.

While some members of my church were initially skeptical, others were intrigued by the idea of making hands-on healing one of our ministries. Some had already heard of HT or had experienced it in a hospital setting. For instance, the Rev. Barbara Schlachter, the wife of our rector, the Rev. Mel Schlachter, had benefited from it when she underwent treatments for breast cancer.

 “With Healing Touch, I found that I went through the chemo without any problems, and my energy was much greater than I had been led to believe it would be,” she says. “It was such a caring thing to do and experience, and I realized that it would be good for me to continue with the treatments even after I was no longer going through radiation or chemo.  When we moved to Iowa City and discovered that one of the women in the parish offered it, I was quick to sign up.  The next thing I knew I was learning how to do it, too.  It has become a great joy to offer this prayerful form of healing of body, mind and spirit to people who are suffering.”

Our ministry team now offers laying-on-of-hands during our Sunday morning services, as well as treatments in our healing room and clinics. There is no charge, though a goodwill donation is welcome, with the money going to support further training for practitioners. Since 2003, the 25 people who are part of our ministry team have given nearly 1,000 treatments to both parishioners and the general public. 
Why Do People Try Healing Touch?
Some have chronic ailments such as arthritis and diabetes, while others are undergoing chemotherapy or radiation or are in hospice care. Some simply come seeking relief from stress.   While a treatment often brings an easing of physical symptoms, many people say that the emotional and spiritual uplift is its primary benefit. 
As a practitioner, I find that giving a treatment is healing to me as well. The wordless connection I experience with my clients is profoundly moving. Giving a treatment allows me to empty myself so that God’s love may flow through me.
I recently learned that the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City—one of the nation’s largest teaching hospitals—is the site of two research studies on the potential benefits of Healing Touch for cancer patients. One is funded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the National Institutes of Health, the other by the National Cancer Institute.
While I look forward to the results of these studies, I can already attest to the results of our Healing Touch work all around us. I see people entering our clinics looking tired and worn, only to emerge with a new sense of peace and strength. I talk to former clients who tell me how much it meant to them to receive these treatments. And I see the quiet miracles of grace that often happen in our small healing room overlooking the blooming tulips and daffodils in the church’s garden.
How to Do a Healing Touch Session
How to Do a Healing Touch Session
In the first level of Healing Touch Spiritual Ministry training, this laying-on-of-hands exercise is taught:
  • Begin by placing your hands gently on the head or shoulders of the person who wishes to be healed. Center your thoughts and pray that this person may receive God’s healing.
  • Breathe deeply and visualize divine blessings flowing into the person before you. Fill your heart with love and compassion for them.
  • As you pray, you may feel a sense of warmth in your hands. Stay focused on the present moment and let the energy flow through you.
  • Hold your hands in place as long as the Spirit directs. 
  • End with a prayer that the person before you may be blessed and upheld in God’s grace.