When prayer meets health care

This week’s guest blog is written by Dawn-Marie Cornett, community-involved mom of three and Christian Science practitioner from Framingham, Massachusetts.

After my second child was born, there was a complication with me. My doctor went to get a surgeon, but the doctor in residence who had also attended the birth stayed behind. He knew my husband and I were Christian Scientists and that we would be praying for healing. He asked if he could say a prayer for us as well.

We eagerly agreed, and this young doctor said aloud one of the most comforting, beautiful prayers of affirmation I’d ever heard. Then he stepped into the hall to continue to pray for us silently. By the time the doctor and surgeon returned, my situation had already improved, and within ten minutes there was no longer a need for medical intervention.

There was no way to adequately express my gratitude for the resident doctor. He knew the care we preferred and had the education to provide it. It got me thinking about others who, though they may or may not choose prayer, do choose alternatives to medicine. Wouldn’t they want their physicians to know about these other care choices so they could either provide that care or offer advice based on a knowledge and understanding of the alternatives?

Medical schools across the United States are having this conversation more and more now – to teach or not to teach alternatives to standard allopathic medicine.

Although there may be  disagreement among professionals when alternatives include aspects of spirituality in treatment, medical schools throughout the United States are beginning to teach the link between spirituality and health. Right here on Breaking Bread there is a blog that highlights this new trend in medical education.

So what would you want a doctor responsible for your care to know? Is there only one correct way to care for a person? Should medical schools limit what a student can learn or how their practice is informed?

A basic knowledge of different methodologies seems a logical and needed step in the progress of allopathic healthcare. For me, having a doctor who understood and provided the treatment I preferred, made all the difference.

To receive an email update when a new blog is posted to “Breaking Bread” simply enter your email in the box provided on the right side of this page.



If you enjoy watching health trends and are seeing the connection between your health and your spiritual practice, you might consider being a guest blogger. Send me your pitch: [email protected]


  1. Claire says

    This experience is a lovely reminder that Christian Scientists can openly communicate with medical professionals about our preferences without feeling like they are “on the other side” even though we have a common goal.

  2. Virginia McCullough says

    Great experience and good questions, Dawn Marie. Thank you for this. It reminds me of how important respect is in maintaining a healing atmosphere. Harmony and health go hand in hand. To me prayer is a vital part of harmony.

    I like that your questions open thought to consider new possiblities. It reminds me of hearing a college professor speak about population; he studied mice populations. At one point he said that he could teach what he thought was right, but that it was up to the students to decide what they believed. That was a new revelation to me at the time.