I have just read this most encouraging news item on th BCNA website. Personally I have prayed for many friends who have had cancer, often with very wonderful results.
Wednesday, 27 October 2010
Prayer may improve wellbeing
A recent clinical trial undertaken at the Royal Adelaide Hospital has found that praying for a person with cancer may help to improve their emotional and spiritual wellbeing, even if they don’t know they are being prayed for.
In a trial of 999 people with various types of cancer, an established Christian prayer group was asked to pray for 509 patients. The remaining 490 patients received no prayer intervention (the control group). The patients did not know about the prayer intervention, but had agreed to participate in a study about quality of life.
The results of the study found that those who had received the prayer intervention showed a small but statistically significant improvement over time in spiritual wellbeing compared with the control group. Emotional wellbeing was also improved.
Professor Ian Olver, who conducted the trial, said the ‘jury was still out’ on whether praying helped with cancer, but that the researchers had done everything possible to remove flaws from the study that could prejudice the results.
Previous studies on the effect of prayer have had both positive and negative findings.