Francis MacNutt

Lately I’ve been running into people, protestant (mostly) and (a few) Catholics, who are into the healing ministry of a Catholic? Episcopalian? named Francis MacNutt. Anyone ever hear of him and his ministry? if so, what say you? Looks suspect to me. . .

Good Morning Church

Hi,
Francis MacNutt is a former Catholic Priest. He has been deeply involved in the Charismatic Renewal from almost the beginning. He has had a very powerful healing ministry and has written some good books on the Renewal.

You can learn more here:

christianhealingmin.org/index.htm

He has also been laisized and he and his wife are both in the Catholic Church. His work has allowed him to minister in and out of the Church. I believe he has brought much understanding of the faith to others.

I have several very close friends that have attented his school and it is awesome. It takes a committment of three times to complete the training. They have formed St. Rapheal’s Ministry and are
blessed with a preist in the group. Thankfully, I have also been receipient of the prayers done the way that he has taught. It is excellent and completely inline with the Churches teaching.

I think one thing that makes it so successful, is while they are praying with you, there is someone from the group in the chapel before the Eucharist, interceding. They also spend considerable time before and and afterwards in prayer, after the person being prayed for has left before the Eucharist.

You may ask the Lord if this is something he is desireing of you?
Something that he would like you to pratake in for training. And go for it.

Pani Rose

I’m resurrecting this thread because I recently discovered my Fundamentalist/Evangelical in-laws reading a book by MacNutt.

I’ve read the CHM website (christianhealingmin.org/index.htm), and while it specifically states that MacNutt is a former Catholic priest, it says nothing else about the Catholic Church or any Protestant denomination except the Episcopal Bishop of Florida. However, the website states that it is an “ecumenical” organization that is not financially supported by the Episcopal Church.

The website states that:

We are encouraged as we see God’s message of Healing, which the church has ignored for so long, once again recognized as an integral part of the Gospel of Christ.

I find this statement to be horribly ambiguous. What is meant by “church”? What is meant by “God’s message of Healing”?

Is this “church” the “Body of Christ” that has Christ as its head? If so, how exactly does Christ ignore any integral part of His own Gospel? It would appear that there is a faulty ecclesiology at work here. I wonder if this is the typical “ecumenical movement” error of confusing the Church with the heresy of pan-Christianity.

Is “God’s message of Healing” confined only to healing physical or mental ailments, or does it include the more important healing of spiritual healing (after all, our spiritual health determines how we are to spend eternity). If “God’s message of Healing” includes spiritual health, I fail to see how the Church has ignored this message. The Church has constantly held the sacraments (specifically of Penance and Reconciliation, the Eucharist, and Anointing of the Sick) in high regard and as essential elements for one’s health and wellbeing (spiritual and physical). I wonder if this is the common error found in some charismatic groups that the most important healing is that found at the hands of charismatics (not the healing found through the sacraments instituted by Jesus Christ).

I would really like some answers to these questions by someone who knows more about MacNutt and CHM. After reading the group’s website, I’m simply not convinced that this man nor his organization are in line with the teachings of the Catholic Church. The website certainly does not say as much, and it appears that this reticence for some reason is intentional.

Hello, David,

I am wondering if your in-law was reading one of his two excellent books that were written many years ago while he was actively serving as a Catholic priest, and ministering to those in need of healing. One was called Healing, and the other, Power to Heal, both of which I own, and highly regard as being very Catholic and inspiring.

I was so sad to discover that he more or less dropped off the face of the earth, for he was, in those days, a very gifted priestly servant. Many, many souls were healed in body, mind and spirit, and his writings encouraged the family to pray together for God to heal their loved ones. Very faith-filled, and convicting --inspiring us to approach God for those graces we need. I did not see anything in his writings to be alarmed about whatsoever, and they were excellent vehicles of instruction on this subject.

It was edifying to see the Lord working through the clergy, as He presently does through Sister Briege McKenna, and Father D’Orio. But whatever happened to him? I’m at a loss to help out here, but I can witness to the authenticity of his earlier writings and assure you that your in-law will not suffer harm if the book you referred to is one that I mentioned.

Thanks for the reply :slight_smile:

They are reading Deliverance from Evil Spirits: A Practical Manuel. I haven’t read it, but I did steal a look-see on a couple of pages. At one point he wrote that Catholicism presented exorcists as exclusively “being chewed up by demons”. I have no idea what that’s supposed to mean, and I’m sure Fr. Gabriele Amorth would take exception to that remark.

David,

That sounds like a later work of his, and anything he wrote after leaving the priesthood would not find its way into my library, I’m afraid. He did allude to deliverance ministry briefly in his early book. It was something the praying group had occasionally discerned as a root cause of a particular illness, and he did not advise that anyone dare approach this without specific training and much help from the Body of Christ who were also present and able to assist with prayer.

I recall that it was only one chapter, which was written to make the reader aware of the possibility of demonic activity, and not specifically to encourage the practice of exorcism.

[quote=Joysong]It was something the praying group had occasionally discerned as a root cause of a particular illness.
[/quote]

That may explain much. My in-laws are on an “all illnesses are the work of demons” thing at the moment.

[quote=Pani Rose]He has also been laisized and he and his wife are both in the Catholic Church. His work has allowed him to minister in and out of the Church. I believe he has brought much understanding of the faith to others.
. . .
[/quote]

Glad to hear that he is back in good standing with the Church - both for the ministry and for him personally. His personal problems caused a great loss to the healing ministry for a time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pani Rose
He has also been laisized and he and his wife are both in the Catholic Church. His work has allowed him to minister in and out of the Church. I believe he has brought much understanding of the faith to others.
. . .

Glad to hear that he is back in good standing with the Church - both for the ministry and for him personally. His personal problems caused a great loss to the healing ministry for a time.

However, this isn’t made clear at all on his website, and as I’ve pointed out there are some statements there that seem out of step with Catholic doctrine.

Does anyone know, 100%, that he is a practicing Catholic?

Dear David,

Re: We are encouraged as we see God’s message of Healing, which the church has ignored for so long, once again recognized as an integral part of the Gospel of Christ.

I can appreciate that a surface reading of an isolated statement such as this might cause alarm or concern. Let’s think positive, and try to understand the possible basis of his words.

One cannot know how long ago this was written. When we consider that the Church has been regularly initiating healing services in the last ten years or so where the sacrament of Extreme Unction is administered, it is easy to agree with him. I’m not aware that the sacrament was given this readily, unless a parishioner was on a deathbed at home or in a hospital, and called for the priest. My pastor has given a lot of instruction about it in our Church’s services, to correct this wrong idea in the minds of our parishioners.

I’m rather excited that the Church has a renewed interest in this type of anointing prayer service, and I have to respect Father’s unspoken lament that it has been rather neglected in the past. Through efforts of the Holy Spirit working within persons like himself and others, that is probably the beginnings of the renewed interest in the necessity to give the sacrament and pray together in community for all our ill members.

Actually, the statement is ambiguous, and taken at face value there is no other way to take it than negatively. The reason is, is because it apparently sets this “healing ministry” against the actual healing ministry that Our Blessed Lord, Himself, instituted—the sacraments. I’m not speaking exclusively about Extreme Unction, or, I prefer, as it is now called, the Anointing of the Sick.

In fact, Anointing of the Sick is not the primary healing sacrament of the Church. First is Baptism that heals our spirits completely, and equal to baptism is the Eucharist which unites us to Christ thus bringing us healing. Second, the sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation heals us spiritually and puts us in a state of justice.

As it stands, the Catholic Church has always offered the greatest and highest healing ministries through her sacraments. End of discussion… unless we want to go the route of claiming that physical healing is of an equal or greater magnitude than spiritual healing. I’ve seen this later position taken by some people involved in the CCR, and I’ve seen it lead to the ruination of more than one soul.

However, I certainly don’t know that much about Mr. MacNutt or what he means by that statement. Granted, at face value I find that statement extremely problematic for a Catholic to espouse, but that’s not the point of my inquiry. I’m just curious as to what flavor of the day my in-laws are into now. :wink:

Hello. I’m new here and I’m bringing this thread back up. I’m currently reading Mr. MacNutt’s book on Healing. So far, it’s seems very good. He backs his reasoning very well, even with patristics.

I’ve read through this thread, but did anyone here find out what Mr. MacNutt’s current relationship with the Catholic Church?

About my myself: I’m a lay person and staunch Catholic; MA in Religious Studies with a concentration in Scripture; teach Bible Studies; Catholic apologist.

Plato :cool:

[quote=Plato]Hello. I’m new here and I’m bringing this thread back up. I’m currently reading Mr. MacNutt’s book on Healing. So far, it’s seems very good. He backs his reasoning very well, even with patristics.

I’ve read through this thread, but did anyone here find out what Mr. MacNutt’s current relationship with the Catholic Church?

About my myself: I’m a lay person and staunch Catholic; MA in Religious Studies with a concentration in Scripture; teach Bible Studies; Catholic apologist.

Plato :cool:
[/quote]

I have read a few books by Francis McNutt and they were very good. In answer to your questions about him, here is an excerpt from a site I found this on the Web:

"In 1975, Francis met Judith Sewell in Jerusalem and five years later they married and settled in Clearwater, Fla. Together they founded Christian Healing Ministries and traveled widely, speaking as a team and taking their two children with them. In 1987 they moved to Jacksonville, Florida, invited there by the Episcopal Diocese of Florida, and since then, their center has continued to grow. In 1993, they received a dispensation to marry from the Roman Catholic Church. "

Supporting Link
christi:anhealingmin.org/whoare.htm

Wow! Thanks Honoria20 and God Bless+

Another poster in this thread - Joysong - wrote that any book Mr. MacNutt wrote after being a priest is not worth reading. I suppose his doctrine changed? Do you agree? Indeed, many a pious monk have started their own religion in the history of our Church! LOL!

I just want to make sure he’s orthodox, that’s all. The fact that he emphasizes healing prayer doesn’t take away from orthodoxy. In fact, he makes some compelling points for its revival in modern day Christian spirituality. Well, it’s revived, I think. But how do Catholics view this emphasis on healing prayer?

Pax,

Plato

[quote=Plato]Wow! Thanks Honoria20 and God Bless+

Another poster in this thread - Joysong - wrote that any book Mr. MacNutt wrote after being a priest is not worth reading. I suppose his doctrine changed? Do you agree? Indeed, many a pious monk have started their own religion in the history of our Church! LOL!

I just want to make sure he’s orthodox, that’s all. The fact that he emphasizes healing prayer doesn’t take away from orthodoxy. In fact, he makes some compelling points for its revival in modern day Christian spirituality. Well, it’s revived, I think. But how do Catholics view this emphasis on healing prayer?

Pax,

Plato
[/quote]

When I first learned of his decision to leave the priesthood to marry I was devastated and have to say until you asked this question tonight I was still not very happy with him. I searched out more information on him and found the site I posted.

We are not here to judge anyone – as Someone once said, “by their ‘Fruits’ ye shall know them”…:wink:

[quote=Honoria20]When I first learned of his decision to leave the priesthood to marry I was devastated and have to say until you asked this question tonight I was still not very happy with him. I searched out more information on him and found the site I posted.

We are not here to judge anyone – as Someone once said, “by their ‘Fruits’ ye shall know them”…:wink:
[/quote]

Honoria20,

I’m not judging Mr. MacNutt. He and his healing prayer mission are just very attractive since he is a priest. Once a priest, always a priest; man cannot undo what the Holy Spirit has done. Being ordained to the priesthood is like being married sacramentally. And, I’m sure he had a calling to the priesthood.

To laicise means that he cannot carry out his priestly duties in the Church, that’s all . Did you know that Eastern Catholic priests are married? Also, Mr. MacNutt does have a Dominican charism because it seems he is a great teacher - at least this is what I can tell from reading his book on Healing . You know better than I do all the books he’s written.

I just wanted to know if there is anything off track with his doctrine. In other words, does he believe anything contrary to Catholic doctrine. It’s possible that what he writes and acts upon may make many Catholics uneasy because of the Pentecostal /Protestant bent, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s contrary to Catholic doctrine.

Warm regards,

Plato

P.S.

By the way, I’m not a Charismatic Catholic. I’m just exploring what being charismatic is, and why does there have to be such a distinction? If people want to do healing prayer by laying of hands, then so be it. How many times did you comfort people by putting your hands on their shoulder when they flet bad or cried? If we believe God works through everyone, then he works through the laity even in the laying of the hands.

Priest are special, of course. They perform sacraments which are a visible sign of Jesus’ action in the Church… For example, only the priest and bishop can consecreate the host, forgive sins , etc. and these are sacraments by virtue of their *ministerial * priesthood. The Laity is part of the *common * priesthood, but neverthless a priesthood. Granted, Pentecostals and some Protestants are a little too “Holy Roller” for me, but I think it’s just their manner of expression.

[quote=Plato]Honoria20,

I’m not judging Mr. MacNutt. He and his healing prayer mission are just very attractive since he is a priest. Once a priest, always a priest; man cannot undo what the Holy Spirit has done. Being ordained to the priesthood is like being married sacramentally. And, I’m sure he had a calling to the priesthood.

To laicise means that he cannot carry out his priestly duties in the Church, that’s all . Did you know that Eastern Catholic priests are married? Also, Mr. MacNutt does have a Dominican charism because it seems he is a great teacher - at least this is what I can tell from reading his book on Healing . You know better than I do all the books he’s written.

I just wanted to know if there is anything off track with his doctrine. In other words, does he believe anything contrary to Catholic doctrine. It’s possible that what he writes and acts upon may make many Catholics uneasy because of the Pentecostal /Protestant bent, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s contrary to Catholic doctrine.

Warm regards,

Plato
[/quote]

Whoops! Plato I wasn’t addressing you! I was addressing someone mentioned in your quote.
I agree with what you have said about his being a priest forever and yes I am aware of the Eastern rite.
Sorry I didn’t make things clearer:o

No worries Honoria20 - I just added more to my last post.

Warm regards,

Plato

[quote=Plato]Honoria20,

P.S.

By the way, I’m not a Charismatic Catholic. I’m just exploring what being charismatic is, and why does there have to be such a distinction? If people want to do healing prayer by laying of hands, then so be it. How many times did you comfort people by putting your hands on their shoulder when they flet bad or cried? If we believe God works through everyone, then he works through the laity even in the laying of the hands.

Priest are special, of course. They perform sacraments which are a visible sign of Jesus’ action in the Church… For example, only the priest and bishop can consecreate the host, forgive sins , etc. and these are sacraments by virtue of their *ministerial *priesthood. The Laity is part of the *common *priesthood, but neverthless a priesthood. Granted, Pentecostals and some Protestants are a little too “Holy Roller” for me, but I think it’s just their manner of expression.
[/quote]

But we are all part of the Mystical Body of Christ and as laypersons are supposed to pray for each other, ask their intercession, and yes we can even lay hands on the sick just not sacramentally as priests of the ministerial priesthood…In our Baptism we all become part of the Royal Priesthood.:wink:

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