A Test of the Healing Power Of Prayer

WEDNESDAY 11:53 am

"Please surround Bruce Stephens with your loving, healing light. Thank you. Thy will be done. [signed] Mantra." Nurse-practitioner Suzanne Crater taps the SEND panel on her screen, and Bruce Stephens, being prepped for coronary angioplasty in the next room, receives another Duke service: prayer. Crater has entered Stephens' name with the Virtual Jerusalem website, which inserts prayers in that city's Western Wall. She will also e-mail or phone it to Buddhist monks in Nepal, a Carmelite convent near Baltimore, an interdenominational Christian prayer center in Missouri and several other congregations--all of which will entrust it further to some Higher Force. Only...

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