Patient: Prayer is aid to recovery
Anita Phillips of Salem, Ala., firmly believes she's healed of cancer. And after reading a newspaper story Friday stating a scientific test found that prayer by strangers doesn't positively benefit heart surgery patients, the 56-year-old Christian had a few things to say.
"This isn't bigger than my God," she said of her cancer, which was diagnosed last August as Stage 4 and was found in her kidneys, lungs and backbone.
Phillips will receive her last radiation treatment Monday at the John B. Amos Cancer Center in Columbus. A member of Faith Outreach Church in Phenix City, she said her cancer has all but disappeared, and she credits many prayers for that.
Last summer, she said, she was told to go home and die. "There was nothing medical science could do for me."
Doctor speaks out
Dr. Shane Darrah, a Columbus cardiologist, expressed skepticism about the study released Thursday showing strangers' prayers did not positively affect heart patients.
"As much as we try, and I am a scientist, some things cannot be measured," said Darrah, a member of Wynnbrook Baptist Church who's on staff at the Patrick Heart Institute of St. Francis Hospital. Like others interviewed Friday, he's not sure what the study accomplished. "It's interesting to talk about, but I don't think we'll ever get any meaningful information" out of such faith-science comparisons.