Kathryn Kuhlman- The Healing Evangelist
Kathryn Kuhlman- The Healing Evangelist
Kathryn Kuhlman was an American Christian missionary who died on February 20, 1976. She was born on May 9, 1907, and died on February 20, 1976.
Joseph Adolph Kuhlman and Emma Walkenhorst, who were German-American, gave birth to Kathryn Johanna Kuhlman near Concordia, Missouri, in 1907.
She had a spiritual experience when she was 14, and a few years later, she went to Idaho with her older sister and brother-in-law to teach on the road. Later, the Evangelical Church Alliance gave her a license to preach.
Reverend Mother Amanda H. Williams of Brooklyn, New York, who was a leader for women in ministry and was known for her healing ministry, helped start the healing ministry in Kuhlman.
Burroughs Waltrip was a missionary who lived in Texas. He got a divorce from his first wife, left his family, moved to Mason City, Iowa, and started a revival center called Radio Chapel. Kuhlman and her piano friend Helen Gulliford helped him raise money for the center.
After Waltrip and Kuhlman started dating, she told her friends that she couldn’t “find God’s will in the matter.” She seemed to feel bad about it. Kuhlman’s friends tried to persuade her not to marry Waltrip, but she didn’t listen because Waltrip’s wife had left him, not the other way around (it’s not clear why they broke up). On October 18, 1938, she quietly married “Mister,” as she called him, in Mason City, but the wedding was said to have given her no peace. They didn’t have any kids, so they broke up in 1944 and got divorced in 1948.
In an interview with the Denver Post in 1952, Kuhlman talked about her marriage. She said, “He charged—correctly—that I refused to live with him. I haven’t seen him in eight years.” Many times, Kuhlman apologized for her part in Waltrip’s earlier marriage breaking up. She said that the pain it caused Waltrip’s children was especially hard for her. She said it was the one thing she regretted the most in her life, second only to betraying her love for Jesus.
In 1955, when she was in her late 40s, doctors told Kuhlman she had a heart problem. However, she kept a very busy schedule, often traveling across the US and abroad for meetings that lasted from two to six hours and sometimes went late into the night.
Jamie Buckingham wrote a book about Kuhlman in 1976 called “Daughter of Destiny.” In it, he said, “The television ministry itself cost more than $30,000 a week. Stopping or even slowing down would mean she was starting to fail. The miracle services were the same way. As the pain in her chest got almost too much to bear, she didn’t hold fewer services, she held more.
Between the 1940s and 1970s, Kuhlman went all over the United States and other countries to hold healing groups. She was one of the best-known healing preachers, or “faith healers,” in the world. She didn’t like the term “faith healer,” though, because it made her feel bad.
In the 1960s and 1970s, Kuhlman had a TV show called “I Believe in Miracles” that was shown all over the country every week. She also had a 30-minute radio show that was broadcast all over the country. It included talks and, often, music and messages from her healing services. Her foundation began in 1954, and in 1970, a branch in Canada was opened. At the end of her life, she helped the Jesus movement grow.
She moved to Los Angeles in 1970 and helped thousands of people get better. She was often compared to Aimee Semple MacPherson. She was known for her “gift of healing,” even though, as she often said, she had never studied theology. She was friends with Christian TV preacher Pat Robertson and appeared on his Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) and its most popular show, The 700 Club.
Paul Bartholomew, who was in charge of Kuhlman’s affairs, sued her in 1975. He sued her for $430,500 for breaking a contract because he said she kept $1 million worth of gold and $1 million worth of fine art hidden. In the case, two former coworkers said she stole money and took records without permission, which she denied. She also said the records were not private. Kuhlman says that the case was settled before it went to court.
Record Of Healing
Over the years, about 2 million people said that they were healed at her meetings.
After a fellowship in Philadelphia in 1967, Dr. William A. Nolen did a case study of 23 people who said they were cured during one of her meetings. Nolen’s long-term follow-ups showed that in those cases, there were no cures. One woman who was said to have been cured of spinal cancer threw away her brace and ran across the stage when Kuhlman told her to. The next day, her spine broke, and she died four months later.
Believers didn’t agree with how Nolen looked at Kulhman. A doctor named Lawrence Althouse said that Nolen only went to one of Kuhlman’s services and didn’t check up on all of the people who said they were treated there. Dr. Richard Casdorph wrote a book with proof that Kuhlman’s healings were magical.A Christian philosophy professor named Hendrik van der Breggen claimed that the claims were true. Author Craig Keener came to this conclusion: “No one says that everyone was healed, but it’s hard to deny that some people got better, and prayer seems to have helped.” One could say that these things happened because of Kathryn Kuhlman’s faith or the faith of the people who asked for help, or because of no one’s faith at all, as in some of Kuhlman’s teachings. However, the evidence shows that some people were healed, even in extraordinary ways.
Dr. Richard Owellen, who worked on cancer studies at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and attended many of Miss Kuhlman’s services, said he had looked into different healings and found them to be true.
In July 1975, her doctor told her that she had a small heart problem. In November, she had a recurrence. So, Kuhlman had open-heart surgery in Tulsa, Oklahoma. On February 20, 1976, she died during the surgery. In her biography, it was said that when she died in the hospital, a bright light was seen hanging over her dead body.
Kathryn Kuhlman was buried in Glendale, California, at the Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery. In her honor, there is a sign in the main park of Concordia, Missouri, which is a town in central Missouri on Interstate Highway 70.
Her will caused trouble after she died. The biggest part of her estate, $267,500, went to three family members and twenty workers. Nineteen other workers got gifts that were not as big. The Independent Press-Telegram says that her workers were upset when they found out that “she did not leave most of her estate to the foundation, as she had in a previous will from 1974.”
The Kathryn Kuhlman Foundation kept going, but in 1982, it stopped broadcasting on radio across the country because it didn’t have enough money. In the end, the Foundation went out of business in April 2016.
Life After Death
Many Christians see Kuhlman as an important person who helped start the charismatic movement we have today. She had an effect on faith therapists like Billy Burke and Benny Hinn. Hinn has used some of her methods, and he has also written a book about Kuhlman because he often went to her sermons. Burke did meet her and get advice from her. When he was a young boy, Burke said that he was healed by a miracle while he was in her service.
In 1981, David Byrne and Brian Eno used a part of one of Kuhlman’s lectures in a track they made for the album My Life in the Bush of Ghosts they made together. After not being able to get permission from Kuhlman’s estate to use her voice, the track was changed to use sounds from an unnamed exorcism. This new version was called “The Jezebel Spirit.” The Kuhlman version was later included on the “Into the Spirit Womb” track of the 1992 bootleg album Ghosts.
I Believe in Miracles, by Kathryn Kuhlman, Prentice-Hall, 1962.
God Can Do It Again, by Kathryn Kuhlman (1969)
Nothing Is Impossible With God, by Kathryn Kuhlman, Bridge-Logos Publishers, 1974.Never Too Late, by Kathryn Kuhlman, Bridge-Publishers of Logos
Buckingham, Jamie (1976). Daughter of Destiny is the story of Kathryn Kuhlman. ISBN 0882703188.
The Woman Behind the Miracles, by Wayne E. Warner and Kathryn Kuhlman, was published in 1993 by Servant Publications/New Wine Press.
Amy Collier Artman, The Miracle Lady: Kathryn Kuhlman and the Transformation of Charismatic Christianity, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., (2019)