What is Wholeness and Healing?
Wholeness and Healing are central to the Gospel message, and are intrinsically linked. Through God’s healing we are brought to fullness of life.
‘Health is a dynamic state of well-being of the individual and society, of physical, mental, spiritual, economic, political and social well-being in harmony with each other, with the material environment and with God.’
World Council of Churches (WCC)
Healing is concerned with moving towards the wholeness of all things and between all things - achieved through God, by God, and with God.
…through (God is the source of joy, hope, peace and love)
…by (God acts in our hearts)
….with (we are not alone in this journey)
This mirrors the Church of England report A Time to Heal, which says that healing ministry is Visionary, Prophetic and Dynamic:
‘Visionary…because it beckons us towards the future and a glimpse of the kingdom, and the hope of the whole of creation renewed.’
(It’s about God, and from God)
‘Prophetic…because it calls us to reconsider our relationships with God, each other and the world and to seek forgiveness and a new start in our lives.’
(It’s to do with relationships)
‘Dynamic…because Jesus Christ is with us to the end of time: when we pray for his help, he comforts, strengthens and heals us, responding to our deepest needs.’
(We are not alone in our journeying)
The idea of journeying is crucial to our understanding of healing. As Christians we are not promised an easy life, but are promised that we will never be alone in all that life throws at us – and that God always hears and answers our prayers (even if it’s in a way that’s surprising and unexpected!)
‘Healing does not mean reversing. Healing does not mean that what happened will never again cause us to hurt. It does not mean we will never miss those who have been lost to us or that which was taken from us. Healing means that our dignity is restored and we are able to move forward in our lives.’
Desmond Tutu, The Book of Forgiving
Diocesan Healing Forum
The Diocese has a Healing Forum to discuss and promote Wholeness and Healing, with the following aims:
To aid communication between different areas of ministry that have a ‘healing feel’, and also communication about healing ministry in the diocese more generally.
To provide, and signpost towards, healing provision in the diocese, and equip people to offer best practice in healing ministry.
To raise the profile and understanding of healing ministry in the diocese.
To facilitate a network of support for those engaged with healing ministry – to give one answer to the question, ‘who heals the healers?’
The current membership of the forum is:
Sean Augustin (Acting Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser)
Elaine Chegwin-Hall (Convenor of the Deliverance Team)
Ben Fulford (Joint Acting Head of Department and Senior Lecturer in Systematic
Theology, University of Chester)
Canon Vivien Gisby (Vicar, St Paul’s Macclesfield)
Emma Handley (Vicar, St Paul’s Stalybridge)
Timothy Hupfield (Diocesan Healing Adviser)
Vanessa Layfield (Inclusion and Disability Officer)
Peter Mackriell (Head of Counselling)
Canon Stephen Mansfield (Coordinator of the Diocesan Mediation Service)
Lisa Oakley (Associate Professor Applied Theology – University of Chester)
Maddy Watts (Pastoral Worker and Parish Nurse)
The Bishop's Adviser for the Ministry of Healing is Timothy Hupfield. He can be contacted on: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please get in touch any time if you’re interested in healing ministry, have questions, need support or guidance, would like to borrow resources, or would like to invite Timothy or another member of the team to talk to your synod, chapter, PCC or other group.
Acorn Christian Healing Foundation
The Christian Healing Mission
The Guild of Health and St Raphael
The Harnhill Centre of Christian Healing
Holy Rood House
House of Bishops Guidelines for Good Practice in Healing Ministry
The Well Christian Healing Centre