PSYCHOTHERAPY SCIENTIFIC AND RELIGIOUS

A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

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168         PSYCHOTHERAPY : SCIENTIFIC AND RELIGIOUS chap.
their physical ailments ? Every book about Lourdes records many such cases. There can also be seen photographs of typical cures exhibited in the Bureau de Constatations. Only cures of what are known as organic diseases are represented here, the authorities making the usual distinction between functional and organic disorders. However, the dividing line between these two types is becoming more and more blurred every day. Some have been cured of cancer, others of tuberculosis, others of venereal disease, for example. Medical men are invited to discuss these cases with the medical officer at the Bureau de Constatations. When the Bureau is satisfied as to the genuineness of any cure and no final opinion is given until a year has elapsed it declares it to have been brought about by means unknown to present-day medicine. Cures of the so-called functional disorders are never included in this category and the word ' miracle ' is rightly avoided, even where there is apparently the most justification for using it. It is the world at large which is most interested in this ambiguous term and the explanation in vogue needs further interpretation.
Father RevenotI91 maintains that ' the apparent miracle would have to depend on the truth of what is believed at Lourdes, and that belief is that God works miracles there at the intercession of the Blessed Virgin, and not by the ordinary forces of nature, psychic or other not to mention the rest of the interlocking beliefs of the Catholic Faith \ Perhaps he explains the last phrase by an earlier sentence when he says, ' There is one thing certain about Lourdes, it is that the pilgrims who go there, and especially the sick, are moved to do so by their faith, not the faith that they are healed, or that they are to be healed or whatever it is that underlies " faith healing " but their Catholic Faith. . . /