PvE Holy Paladin Healer Guide

PVE Holy Paladin Healer Guide WotLK 3.3.5a

Welcome to the Holy Paladin PvE guide for World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King. 

You are a beacon of light in a dark world. A sacred shield.
Blessed with divine favor, you wield the greatest healing power in all of Northrend.
Hone your skills and your allies shall never falter.

Read this guide in its entirety to start your journey to true healing mastery. 

Holy Paladin in Wrath of the Lich King

Holy Paladin is widely regarded as the most powerful healer in Wrath of the Lich King. Using Beacon of Light, we are able to be both the strongest tank healer in the game, and a raid healer, simultaneously. Unlike TBC Holy Paladin, which was brought almost exclusively for a 3rd blessing, WotLK Hpal is a healing powerhouse and a necessity to any raid team due to its absurd output. Between Holy Paladin’s unbeatable healing with Holy Light and raid cooldowns such as Divine Sacrifice, our value in raid is unparalleled.

To understand how Holy Paladins went from the worst healer to the best healer in a single update, read below.

Avenging Wrath: Now increases healing done by 20% for 20 seconds. Previously this only scales your damage. Avenging Wrath is now our largest throughput cooldown. 

Holy Shock: Now a 6 second cooldown, down from 15. Its spellpower coefficient was greatly increased. 

Divine Protection: No longer is it the worse version of Divine Shield that you’d never ever use– now it’s a shield wall. 

Seal of Wisdom: Changed from a static amount to a percentage. This is huge, as it now becomes better and better the larger our mana pool becomes.

Illumination: Its effect was halved. It now only grants 30% mana return, instead of 60%. 

Forbearance: The duration has doubled from 60 to 120 seconds.

Lay on Hands: No longer eats all your mana! This is a proper healing cooldown now. 

Beacon of Light: Is by far the greatest ability in our kit. This allows us to effortlessly heal a tank, while spamming the raid with AoE heals via Glyph of Holy Light, or an offtank. Keep this up at all times.

Sacred Shield: Jealous of a disc priest’s bubbles? No longer. This allows us to passively spam bubbles onto our tank. Keep this up at all times. 

Judgements of the Pure: A MASSIVE 15% haste (492 haste rating) buff that one must keep active at all times. 

Divine Sacrifice: Or “DSac” for short– the best raid cooldown in the game. Use this during periods of heavy raid damage i.e. Shadron in the Sartherion+3 Drake encounter. This ability actually provides two unique buffs when used: Divine Sacrifice, which transfers party damage to the user, and Divine Guardian, which mitigates damage taken to the entire raid. Consider canceling Divine Sacrifice, leaving only Divine Guardian up, in order to avoid taking massive damage to yourself. See the addons and macros portion of this guide to find out how.

Aura Mastery: Another powerful raid cooldown, particularly strong versus encounters with high elemental damage. Use this in conjunction with Shadow Resistance Aura, Fire Restistance Aura, Frost Resistance Aura for an additional 130 resistances to the entire raid. You can also use this in conjunction with Devotion Aura for a bit of physical mitigation to the raid, although this variant stands to mitigate far less damage than using it versus elemental damage. 

Divine Plea: Our main form of mana regeneration. While using this in an encounter is a necessity in a lot of instances, you want to avoid using it if at all possible, since it also reduces healing done by 50%. You should also consider canceling Plea early. See the addons and macros portion of this guide to find out how.

Holy Paladin Strengths and Weaknesses

Here we will discuss Holy Paladin’s many strengths, and their few weaknesses.


  • Insane Output
    Holy Light is crazy enough on its own, but when modified by Beacon of Light and Glyph of Holy Light it becomes the strongest healing ability in the game.

  • Endless Cooldowns
    The Holy Paladin toolkit is the largest of any healer. Between Divine Favor, Avenging Wrath, Lay on Hands, Hand of Sacrifice, Divine Sacrifice & Aura Mastery, the playstyle is extremely active. As you become more and more experienced with your class and the content, you’ll be able to find a cooldown for any scenario.

  • Great Utility
    As a Paladin, we provide necessary buffs to the raid in the form of Blessings. As a holy Paladin, we specialize in Improved Blessing of Wisdom, making our Blessing of Wisdom the strongest Mp5 buff in the game. We also spec into Improved Devotion Aura, boosting the healing received by everyone in the raid by 6%.

    On top of these passive buffs we provide, through our ‘Hand’ abilities, we provide very useful active utility as well. Hand of Protection (previously Blessing of Protection or BoP) can save an allies life by rendering them immune to physical damage for a duration. If a DPS or Healer pulls aggro off a tank, quickly use Hand of Protection on them and the mob will return to the tank. Note that this won’t work against caster mobs, as Hand of Protection only protects against physical attacks.

    Hand of Freedom (previously Blessing of Freedom) removes any slow/root effects from the target, and renders them immune to such effects for 10 seconds. Hint: use this on the Sapphiron encounter to quickly escape Blizzard. Lastly, Hand of Salvation can be used on the biggest pumper in your raid to ensure that they don’t need to hold back on damage. This spell is a rework of the classic/tbc spell Blessing of Salvation. Hint: Use this on an Unholy DK pre-pull, because Gary is a threat fiend.

  • Low skill floor, but infinite skill cap
    Whether you’re new to healing or a veteran, you will quickly fall in love with this class. While you can be a competent Holy Paladin by simply keeping Beacon of Light up on the tank and mashing Holy Light, advanced players will still find it immensely challenging trying to perfect things like swing timing, CD usage and mana management.


  • Lack of Mobility
    Not only do Holy Paladins not have any movement speed increasing abilities (unless you’re an Engineer!) like Resto Druids and Holy Priests, we also don’t have a huge arsenal of instant casts to use on the move. During movement heavy fights, Holy Paladins may be inferior to druids and disc priests who can spam HoTs and bubbles. Read the Forced Movement section of this guide to learn how to handle movement heavy encounters like a pro.


I hope this overview provides the base knowledge needed to understand the raw, unbridled power of a Holy Paladin. Please navigate to the other pages to get information on gear, rotation, talents, & more.

If you have any questions that aren’t answered in this guide, please leave a comment below.


About the Author


World of Warcraft veteran of 18 years. Ex world first raider and rank 1 healer. Slayer of dragons. Lover of cats.
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