Dr. Mehmet Oz is teaming up with DeVon Franklin this month to bring faith to the forefront on his hit daytime talk show with "Faithful Fridays," which will feature conversations about the positive effects spirituality has on people's overall health and well-being.
The cardiothoracic surgeon, who was a health expert on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" for five years before becoming the host of "The Dr. Oz Show" in 2009, told The Christian Post that as a physician, he sees the impact faith has on patients and their families every day.
"Any practicing physician has come face-to-face with the role of faith — we interpret it in different ways. I'm in the hospital today, so it's a constant reminder of the disquiet we all have when we're facing lack of certainty, or when we're not sure what's going on. We use faith in different ways to get us through these difficult times," he said.
As an example, Oz recounted an experience he had with two patients who were both in the ICU after having heart surgery.
"One gentleman lay by himself in that bed and I saw him melt away into the sheets and overtime he became despondent," he said. "On the other side of the ICU, there was a wife who would read to her husband all of the time. She would read scriptures, newspapers, talk to him. This man had had a stroke so we thought that this was probably therapeutic for her just because she couldn't get past the fact that her husband was so debilitated and had this massive injury.
"It turned out he survived and ended up doing very, very well. Different aspects of what she did may have helped him. But I'm quite certain in my mind, and I think people who have dealt with that situation would agree, that faith played a big part of it," he asserted.
Now, in his eighth year of providing health and wellness information to TV viewers on his one-hour show where no subject is off limits, Oz told CP that he has often discussed the topic of faith and religion in people's recovery and healing process.
"The day that we started the show we brought faith into our conversations. Sometimes it was in the context of miraculous events that we couldn't explain. Other times it was the role of faith in trials and examinations of how people getting through difficult times use faith. Numerous guest have brought it into the conversation," he said.
But when it comes to "Faithful Fridays," Oz says he credits Franklin, a Hollywood producer and minister, for playing an integral role in making it all happen.
"He played an instrumental role in opening my eyes to this opportunity — for me to decide to dedicate a day in the week to the discussion of faith and the role that it plays in our lives. And we're doing it in very elegant ways," Oz explained.
He said Franklin is really the one who did all of the "heavy lifting" and brought top faith leaders on board to be a part of the show. Featured in "Faithful Fridays" will be the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, New York Times best-selling author and star of "War Room" Priscilla Shirer, and Hillsong New York City Pastor Carl Lentz.
Franklin noted that they are all so excited about "Faithful Fridays" and what could come of it.
"As you can hear, Dr. Oz's heart is so authentic and true. It's just been a blessing to be able to partner with him on his incredible platform to really begin to talk about spiritual health and what role it should take in our lives, and how we begin to realize that we are more blessed than we sometimes credit ourselves to be," Franklin told CP.
"We go through so much in life. We're so stressed out, people have so much anxiety toward what's going on in the world," he added. "So, we're hoping that with 'Faithful Fridays' in the month of February that it really will help alleviate some stress.
"We're really hoping and believing that this type of program on his show will really help and touch people in the ways they need it most."
On the first episode of "Faithful Fridays," which aired on Feb. 3, Franklin and the panel of faith leaders introduce the "Blessed 30 Challenge." They discuss the concept of going from stressed to blessed in 30 days.
Episodes two through four will explore the miraculous medical recoveries that only God can explain, as well as how to keep the faith in times of suffering and loss, how to strengthen relationships, and how to have the career and life you want.
For more information on "Faithful Fridays," click here.