Wednesday in Easter Week, April 16

Many years ago, on a gorgeous autumn day, the shocking telephone call came into the parish where I was the Rector.  The parishioner on the other end was extremely distraught, and the news was horrific.  Her daughter, Jennifer (not her real name), about 40 years old, had just been taken to the hospital after suffering a major heart attack.  I replied that I would head to the hospital in Boston immediately and would meet her and her husband at the cardiac intensive care unit.  Upon arrival there, the parents, medical staff, and I spoke briefly.  They wanted me to go into Jennifer’s room where she remained completely unresponsive.  I quickly put on the required sanitized hospital gown, took a deep breath, prayed for God’s help, and entered the room.  Even though Jennifer seemed to be in a coma, I spoke to her, quietly and calmly letting her know I was there and that her mother and father were just outside her room.  I gently touched her forearm and gave her a blessing on her forehead as I prayed aloud for her healing and recovery.  I hoped that somehow she might recognize the Lord’s Prayer.  I again told her that her beloved mother and father were nearby.  Miraculously, Jennifer sat up boldly and asked to see her mother and father!!  Jennifer waited many months for a heart transplant.  Eventually, the surgery took place, and I was privileged to sit and pray with the entire family throughout that very long night.  Jennifer is alive and well to this day!

— The Reverend Edward Kienzle