Healing in the History of Christianity
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Amanda Porterfield offers a survey of ideas, rituals, and experiences of healing in Christian history. Jesus himself performed many miracles of healing, and Christians down the ages have seen this as a prominent feature of their faith. Indeed, healing is one of the most constant themes in the long and sprawling history of Christianity. Changes in healing beliefs and practices offer a window into changes in religious authority, church structure, and ideas about sanctity, history, resurrection, and the kingdom of God. Porterfield chronicles these changes, at the same time shedding important new light on the universality of religious healing. Finally, she looks at recent scientific findings about religion's biological effects, and considers the relation of these findings to ages-old traditions about belief and healing.