Earlier this year, the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God in New Zealand ran an advertisement promoting their Healing services:
When doctors and medicines are not enough.
For people who suffer with constant pain, deteriorating health, can’t work due to illness, incurable disease, doctors don’t know what’s wrong, dependent on pills, recovering from injury, weight problems, sick children.
The implication is clear: Prayer will help cure your “incurable” diseases! Just come to our healing sessions!
Mark Hanna, co-founder of the Society for Science Based Healthcare, saw that ad and knew full well that prayers didn’t solve any of those problems. More importantly, for the church to suggest otherwise appeared to him to be a case of false advertising. So he filed a complaint with the Advertising Standards Authority, a self-regulated agency that is pretty effective at getting companies to remove or change their ads.