A longtime cancer doctor believes prayer can be powerful and effective at healing the afflicted, sharing in a recently-published USA Today opinion piece how his investigation into invocations led him from “being a scientifically based ’empirical’ atheist to someone with a profound faith.”
Dr. Gary Onik said he has “encountered at least one terminal cancer patient who was healed by a worldwide prayer effort on his behalf,” and shared his journey of investigating how prayer can help the afflicted.
It was the aforementioned case that led Onik to think deeper on the matter.
“Rather than dismiss this miracle as inconsistent with my empiric and rationally based training, it made me consider how the new scientific knowledge of quantum physics and human consciousness might support the idea of prayer-facilitated healing,” he wrote.
Onik spent a decade looking at how prayer and science might coalesce, and then found himself facing his own terminal prostate cancer diagnosis. Like many others, he had a choice: to seek prayer — or not.
Based on Onik’s research, he said he “knew that prayer had to be a major component” of his own treatment.
The doctor decided to seek prayer, so he posted a video and people from all over the world — and from a diversity of beliefs — reached out to offer invocations.
Onik decided to avoid surgery for his cancer, which had spread to his lymph nodes and bones, and instead relied on prayer and a special immunotherapy regime he created.
“It is now three years since my diagnosis,” he wrote. “Prayer combined with immunotherapy treatment has left me free of metastatic cancer and potentially cured.”
Onik’s not sure he would have been healed without prayer, but there’s one thing he is certain of: prayer is important, especially when it comes to cancer.
“While we in the medical field work on new treatments, and we hope a cure one day, in the meantime, we need to pray,” he wrote.
Read the article in its entirety here.
As Faithwire previously reported, the benefits of faith continue to be shown in scientific studies. For instance, a new Gallup poll found better mental health trends among Americans who routinely attend worship services.
Forty-four percent of weekly churchgoers told Gallup they would describe their “mental health and emotional wellbeing” as “excellent.” This compares to 46% who said the same in 2020 and 42% of regular congregants who reported “excellent” mental health in 2019, holding relatively steady.
As for prayer, specifically, there are studies showing its benefits, though it can be difficult to scientifically investigate.
Christians, though, know the power of prayer, as the Bible repeatedly implores believers to seek the Lord in this way.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV) reads, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
Let’s remember to pray for our friends, family, and loved ones — and to rely on invocations as we journey through the ebbs and flows of our own lives.
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