“Gender, Energy Healing, and the Church of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints,” by Sophia Lyn Nathenson

NathensonPhotoFrom the early 19th century, Mormon women preformed various healing techniques both in and outside of the home (Newell 1987, Stapely & Wright 1993). Over time, as the modern orthodox biomedical model was emerging in America, and healing by faith, laying of hands, and anointing with oil became part of an institutionalized healing ritual reserved for the Priesthood that excluded women. This pilot study investigates whether Mormon women continue to engage in healing rituals outside of both the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints (LDS) institution and mainstream biomedicine. Emphasis is placed on their perceptions of healing, faith and acceptance. Findings from this research are placed in the broader context of Mormon health philosophy historically and current trends in the health behavior of Americans.

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