Couple gets 6 years in Ore. faith-healing case

October 31, 2011 - 3:20 PM

OREGON CITY, Ore. (AP) — A judge has sentenced two members of an Oregon church that embraces faith healing to more than six years in prison, telling them they could easily have kept their newborn son alive.

The Oregonian reports the sentences handed down Monday (http://bit.ly/sEPJVl ) are the harshest sanctions yet for members of the Followers of Christ church. The Oregon City congregation shuns traditional medicine in favor of faith-healing rituals such as prayer and rubbing oil on the sick.

Dale and Shannon Hickman were convicted of manslaughter in the death of their son, David. The boy was born two months prematurely, weighed less than four pounds and lived less than nine hours.

They are the fourth couple in the congregation to stand trial.

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Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com