Title

Exploring narratives in supernatural healing at Grace Church of God, Brooklyn, NY.

Date of Award

5-1-2015

Document Type

Dissertation

School

Drew Theological School

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

Abstract

This dissertation provides insight into Grace Church of God's current practice in supernatural healing. Grace is a Church of God (Anderson, Indiana) congregation ministering to the needs of an immigrant population of Caribbean, Central/South American, and their African American descendants. The research uses a narrative methodology to collect, by way of interviews, 15 initial stories of supernatural healing which are then analyzed to select the 7 thickest and richest. The final group of testimonies did comprise of 3 stories from Brownsville and 4 from elsewhere. A Local Advisory Team (LAT) supported me as pastor in further pulling apart these supernatural healing stories comparing the group of 3 to the group of 4, and all to Biblical narratives in divine healing. Some themes that emerged providing meaning to the lives of the storytellers were broadened and deepened with recommendations for touching lives in the community regarding healing of the spirit, soul, and body. Two of the 21st century divine healing stories were paired with similar Biblical stories and used to conduct two Bible studies. A pre and post test showed that these stories had an impact on the 22 people who attended the classes. The research concluded that Grace has a collection of testimonies in supernatural healing to bring hope and healing to the community. It discovered specific themes and processes that Grace can apply to make its mission and ministry more effective in serving the community.