Miracles as Viral News
I wonder, if you read in the newspaper or heard on the nightly news about a woman who was working miracles, would you believe it? Would it matter which newspaper or television network carried the story? What if your friend told you about it? What if someone you knew had a miraculous healing? What would it take for you to believe?
Since my story includes several healing miracles, I have asked a lot of my friends whether they have ever experienced a miracle or did they, in general, believe in miracles. The answers were varied, from yes to no to maybe. Some folks have attended special healing services on off days at one church or another while a few others have had dramatic improvements to their health. But rarely, did their stories make the evening news. They certainly didn’t publicize the times it didn’t work.
Back in the day, in the time of Aimee Semple McPherson (1920’s and 30’s) and Kathryn Kuhlman (1940’s and 50’s), both well-known female faith healers, their work was often a major news story. Reporters would regularly follow them and their clients to corroborate or validate many of the healings. Of course, some shenanigans were also revealed. And in the end, it was the false claims that undid them all.
I think most of us today would find it easier to explain away a miracle than entertain the idea that such a thing could happen. We do better with ancient stories. But what if your mother or your neighbor or your aunt or even your grandmother told you it was real and it was her? So it happened to Jane.
For her, the very people she needs to believe her, don’t, like her family, her church pastor, or her friends. And then there’s the reporter who wants to unmask her as a charlatan. On the other hand, the people who do believe her are total strangers (all sick), a church group that is outside her comfort zone, her son-in-law who sees her gift as a “gold mine,” and worst of all, some powerful people who want to weaponize her abilities.
This is the world of Jane Freedle, aka Sister Jane.