Research Shows Prayer Heals

A new study at Indiana University confirms what many have believed that prayer heals.  Religion professor Candy Gunther Brown studied the effects of prayer on people suffering from hearing and visual impairments in several towns and villages in rural Mozambique.

Using an audiometer and vision charts depending on the impairment, Professor Gunther Brown tested people before and after they participated in a prayer session in which one or more people prayed for them.  She concluded that there was “highly significant improvement” in hearing and “significant visual improvements.”

She also reports that 2 of the hearing impaired individuals were able to hear 50 decibels lower after the prayer and that 3 of the visually impaired individuals had vision improvements from 20/400 or worse to 20/80.  You may recall that ideal is considered 20/20.  The full details of her study will be peer-reviewed and reported in the Southern Medical Journal next month.

Many people have long believed that science and spirituality were contradictory but this study helps to show that they can coexist and that the effects of prayer can be measured.  Of course, many people will chalk the results up to the placebo effect; however scientists generally recognize about a 30 percent improvement as linked to the placebo effect.  Dr. Gunther Brown’s result were substantially higher than that.

Whatever your take on this study, the results are certainly interesting.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on the healing power of prayer.  Join the discussion.

Next week:  Gratitude Affects Heart and Genetics, Study Finds.

Michelle Schoffro Cook

167 comments

Roger Skinner
Roger Skinner2 years ago

Hi Carol! A bit late commenting on this nearly four year old story. Despite what you think, prayer has never been shown to work any better than chance. Maybe it makes you feel better, but it really doesn't do anything.

Carol Johnson
Carol Johnson2 years ago

I believe in prayer..it's uplifting

Laura Saxon
Past Member 3 years ago

I don't pray and have never been to church. I went once when I was little and lived in Alabama, but the visiting preacher said children are born evil, so we stopped going. I do read a little bit of the Bible, though.

Mari Yamm
Mari 's5 years ago

No, it doesn't.


At JREF, we offer a one-million-dollar prize to anyone who can show, under proper observing conditions, evidence of any paranormal, supernatural, or occult power or event.

to see the current $1 million statement which shows the current amount in our prize account.

http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/1m-challenge.html

To date, no one has passed the preliminary tests.

Bon L.
Bon L.5 years ago

Thanks for the info.

Anna Borsey
Anna Borsey5 years ago

Hmmm . . . does prayer work "long-distance" too, or do the two parties need to be in the same room together? And does prayer work if the afflicted person is ignorant of the fact that s/he is being prayed for? Just wondering.

Victoria S.
Victoria S.5 years ago

Praying is a possitive thing and brings hope, so I know it must have a healing power if only because of possitive thinking. Praying has helped me in many things :-D

George Chaplin
George Chaplin5 years ago

Lots of interesting posts on this topic-thanks everyone! Yep...prayer works! For years I’ve relied on prayer for healing sickness and all sorts of problems. I didn’t know how to pray until I read the first chapter of Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy. You can read it online at
www.spirituality.com/dt/book_lookup.jhtml?reference=SH%201&marks=false
However I’ve got a long way to go to make my prayers as effective as I would like, but I'm working on it!

ChanTlalok Rain C.
ChanTlalok C.5 years ago

Fantastic comments, Praise the Lord, may the Lord shower blessings upon everything everywhere. Daniel, I'm native and the Lakota people call God/Goddess, Wakan Tanka, which means the Great Holy Mystery. Brother Daniel we are also a Great Holy Mystery. God Bless. oh yeah me too Dalia H.

Allison Killion
Allison Killion5 years ago

i've been trying to pray more lately, and i always feel better after i do