Science and Religion, Still Worlds Apart - New York Times: "These [scientific] investigations often have the appeal of a good detective story, but it is never quite clear what to make of the results. Should believers be encouraged when a miracle is corroborated, lending credence to a holy text, or disappointed that what seemed to be a case of divine intervention might have been the outcome of natural forces? A miracle, as the Scottish philosopher David Hume put it, is 'a violation of the laws of nature.' Finding that something is scientifically impossible would only make it more miraculous that it occurred."
The balance between science and faith is interesting. I think this article asks a good question. Does scientific experimentation prove anything, really? Does lack of evidence disprove anything? Even at the end of it all we are still left to decide based upon faith.
I have, for awhile, wondered about the power of prayer in relationship to the closeness of the person being prayed for. The NYT articles says, "One of the coauthors of the study, Dean Marek, a chaplain at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., noted that the study involved people praying for patients they did not know. Personal prayers and those from loved ones, he ventured, may prove more powerful."
I think powerful prayers start with a connection to the person being prayed for. I had a post concerning this awhile back, On Prayer and Passion.