Last October, the Rev. Canon Joseph Asselin, rector of St. Cuthbert’s, Oakville, Ont., observed St. Luke the Physician’s Day by inviting Bishop Michael Bird of the diocese of Niagara to perform a laying on of hands at the altar rail after communion. At first, some in the congregation balked. Some even boycotted the service. “So we went out of our way to make it non-threatening and ordinary, the way it should be,” explains Asselin.He estimates that 70 per cent of the people present at the service opted for healing. “It speaks to a need. Now that the controversy has died down and we have established trust, we plan on doing it more regularly,” Asselin says.