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An Urgent Plea For Prayers

 

I receive many requests to pray for people, but this is one of the most heart breaking pleas that I’ve seen in a long time. This young woman needs a miracle! Although her situation looks grim, we know that “what is impossible with men is possible with God” (Luke 18:27). A novena to Saint Gianna (asking for a miraculous healing) begins today (April 20). If you’d like to participate, please use the link below to sign up and receive email updates. If you’d rather pray on your own, that would be fine too. Jesus assures us that “everyone who asks receives” (Matthew 7:8), so please join me and thousands of others in praying for the miraculous healing that WE KNOW IS POSSIBLE! Please share this request with others.

I am writing this email in the hopes of asking you to join me in a special time of prayer for one of my closest long-term friends, Pamela, a 37 year old wife and stay-at-home mother to three young boys (ages 6, 4 and 19 months). And she is currently about 25 weeks pregnant with baby number 4.

About two months ago, Pamela began experiencing severe migraines which her doctors believed were pregnancy-related. But as they treated her and she did not improve, they did an MRI only to discover a massive tumor on her brain. She immediately had surgery to remove as much of the tumor as possible. Over 90% was removed, but it was impossible to get all of it. Thankfully, baby came through surgery just fine. Then the pathology report came– bringing incredibly heart-wrenching news. Pamela has aggressive,stage 4 brain cancer. She was given a bleak prognosis of living an average of 13 months. As devastating as this diagnosis is, it is all the more complicated by her pregnancy. She cannot begin all of the recommended treatments immediately, and there are some very difficult (almost impossible) decisions to make regarding care for baby balanced with her own care.

In short, Pamela needs a miracle. Both she and her husband are people of deep faith. They are desperate for Christ’s healing touch, and are seeking the wisdom of God in all their decisions.

I have taken on their cause and have been committed to asking as many people as possible to pray for Pamela and her family. Specifically, I am feeling called to do a novena to St. Gianna (an Italian wife and mother of three, who discovered a tumor on her uterus during pregnancy with her fourth baby, and died soon after delivering her.) St. Gianna’s feast day is April 28, so I will be praying April 20-28 specifically for Pamela’s healing. Would you consider joining me in prayer for this dear sister?

I have set up an email notification so that you can sign up to receive the novena prayer for the nine days. (I promise there will be no more emails beyond this.) In addition to the prayer there will be a short story either about the life of St. Gianna, or about Pamela so those of you who don’t know this lovely woman can have a sense of who you’re praying for.

If you’d like to sign up, here is the link:

https://tinyletter.com/propamela

Because I have set this up online, feel free to forward this link to anyone you know who might also be interested in praying for Pamela. Really, the more prayer, the better. Thank you for reading, and being willing to consider joining me in prayer.

Can God Cure Cancer? YES…Give Him A Chance!


 

“Don’t you know God can cure cancer just like a toothache?” (Venerable Solanus Casey, to a woman who believed she had cancer)

Do you believe God can cure cancer? While most of us would probably answer in the affirmative, our minds may change if we or a loved one is diagnosed with the dreaded disease. The developing situation with Angela Faddis has caused me to think about just how often we doubt the Lord’s power, buying into the false belief that some problems are too big for God to handle. Having this mindset will often cause us to not pray about a situation, thinking that there is no hope. If we open up the Bible, however, we’ll see that Jesus says otherwise:

“Ask and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7)

The Lord’s statement couldn’t be any clearer – if we ask we will receive. Note that there is no disclaimer that cancer or “impossible” situations are not included. He simply tells us to ask and it will be given to us. Out of all the people who approached Jesus for healing in the Bible, NEVER once was anyone turned away. They always received the healing they needed. While there is no guarantee that we’ll always receive a physical healing, we can rest assured that our prayers will be answered in the best possible way (Matthew 7:9-11). We will receive EXACTLY what we need!

When faced with an “impossible” situation, we sometimes give up and think “what’s the use?”…BIG MISTAKE! In 1997, my wife was pregnant with our twins (Mary and Elizabeth) and we were told many times that they would not be born alive. My faith was pretty lukewarm at the time and I remember wrestling with the question of whether or not God could cure them. In spite of the grim prognosis, I wanted to believe that “with God all things are possible” (Luke 1:37). Desperate to help my children, I asked the Lord to increase my faith so that I’d believe that He COULD heal the girls. Amazingly, I began to believe that it was possible. At that point, I began to act. I started to pray, contacted a local newspaper reporter (asking for prayers), spread the word at church, and reached out to anyone and everyone. My wife even called a local Catholic radio show and asked for prayers. Although I didn’t know whether or not God would physically heal the girls, I did believe that He COULD heal them. This was a huge step for me, one which brought me much comfort and strengthened my relationship with the Lord. As the word spread and more people continued to pray, the situation began to improve. The days passed and the girls remained alive, defying the odds. Today, Mary and Elizabeth are healthy 14 year old girls. What would have happened if I didn’t bother to pray (or ask others for prayers), thinking that their condition was hopeless? I don’t even want to think about it!

No matter how hopeless a situation looks, ALWAYS pray about it! If you don’t ask, you may not receive! God’s power is greater than any problem we could encounter. While we can never be sure of exactly how He will respond, we can take comfort that He will answer in the way that’s best for us. If you’re having difficulty believing that the Lord can work miracles in your life, borrow the prayer of the father of the boy with a mute spirit…

“I believe; help my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24)

Spiritual Bouquet For Angela Faddis


 

Many of you are familiar with the story of Angela Faddis, a young wife and mother of 2 who is battling untreatable Stage 4 colon cancer. The doctors have recently declared that there is nothing else that can be done for her medically. As Christians, however, we believe strongly in the power of prayer and Jesus’ instruction to “ask and it will be given you, seek and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7).

In 1997, my wife and I were told by many doctors that our twins, Mary and Elizabeth would not be born alive. Although we were devastated, we spread the word and asked as many people as possible to pray for us. Even though we were realistic and knew that there was a good chance the girls would not survive, we took the advice of Our Lord and asked, sought, and knocked. As we struggled to get through each day, we were comforted by numerous prayers, some of which came from people we didn’t even know. Ultimately, the Lord physically healed our twins and today Mary and Elizabeth are healthy 14 year old girls!

Angela’s situation is gravely serious and I’m not trying to bury my head in the sand. Only the Lord knows whether she will survive. What I do know with certainty is that God can cure her cancer in the blink of an eye. As a result, I’d like to send her a spiritual bouquet containing as many Hail Marys as possible. Just as she did at the Wedding at Cana, I’m asking Our Lady to take our request to her Son, knowing that He will do what’s best.

If you’d like to participate, please begin praying and update the number of Hail Marys that you prayed. I’ll keep track of the count and update the count at the top right hand corner of my site. Please spread the word and let’s get as many people praying for Angela and her family as possible. On the Support Angela Faddis Facebook fan page, her husband posted that “Angela is very aware of all of your prayers”. Please update your Hail Mary counts often by visiting this post or by updating the fields in the upper right hand corner of my website. I’ll be updating the totals as requests come in.

Let’s “storm Heaven” on behalf of our sister in Christ, fully believing that “with God all things are possible”. (Matthew 19:26)

Your Name (required)

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Number of Hail Marys prayed

Don’t Take The Our Father So Personally!

 

Are you kidding me? How can I not take the Lord’s Prayer personally? It allows me to communicate directly with my Heavenly Father and has been called the “Perfect Prayer”. Why shouldn’t I take it personally? Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let me explain what I mean. While it’s important (and encouraged) to have a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father, we want to make sure we don’t limit the effectiveness of this powerful prayer by focusing solely on our own personal intentions. Although we should pray for our own needs, we shouldn’t forget the needs of our brothers and sisters located around the world. The Lord’s Prayer provides the perfect opportunity for this type of global outreach. Need some examples?

Our Father Who Art In Heaven – The title says it all. He’s not just “my” Father, but the Father of my co-workers, the person who just cut me off in traffic, the irate customer who just yelled at me on the phone, the criminals whose mug shots appear in the newspaper, the homeless man begging on the street corner and everyone else on the face of the earth. When we pray the Lord’s Prayer, we speak on behalf of each of these individuals and ask for God’s blessings to be poured out upon them.

Hallowed Be Thy Name – On behalf of the entire human race, Father, I ask that Your name be made holy on earth. May those who ignore You learn to love You. Forgive those who use Your name in vain and allow them to see why this is wrong. Allow the entire world to have a greater appreciation of Your mercy and learn to turn to You in times of trouble.

Thy Kingdom Come – Jesus proclaimed that “the time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel” (Mark 1:14). We ask You, Heavenly Father, that this truly takes place in the world. Allow us to see the need for repentance and grant us the grace to turn away from sin. And let Your kingdom spread throughout the world.

Thy Will Be Done, On Earth As It Is In Heaven – In addition to praying that God’s will be done in our own lives, let’s pray that His will be done everywhere in the world. That means no more abortion, crime, pornography, hatred and selfishness. That’s the way it is in Heaven. Let’s pray that it will be this way on earth!

Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread – By praying this one petition on behalf of the entire human race, we are placing our trust in God’s providence. We pray that all of the starving people will obtain food, we pray that all atheists will come to know and love the Lord, we pray that the unemployed will find jobs and we pray that everyone will receive and accept the grace they need to get to Heaven. By concentrating on “this day” (and not tomorrow), we put our faith in God’s providence and follow Jesus’ command to avoid worrying about tomorrow (Matthew 6:34).

Forgive Us Our Trespasses As We Forgive Those Who Trespass Against Us – If we think beyond our own personal needs, we can ask the Father to forgive the sins of the entire world and request that they be able to practice that forgiveness as well. Can you imagine what the world would be like if that became a reality?

Lead Us Not Into Temptation – Help us to avoid gossip, selfishness, sexual immorality and greed. We are surrounded by temptation and need your help, Lord. Our human weakness makes it impossible to avoid these sins, but with your grace, we can do it.

Deliver Us From Evil – Father, we were created to live forever with you in Heaven, but we sometimes lose sight of that fact and turn away from You. On behalf of all of Your children, please allow us to achieve our salvation and live with You in perfect happiness.

There you have it! By broadening our focus as we pray the Our Father, we can intercede for all of God’s children throughout the world. Many of them don’t even realize that they should be asking the Father for these things, so we can step in and help them out. While the Lord’s Prayer can and should be very personal to us, let’s not limit the Father’s generosity. There is more than enough grace to go around. Let’s share it with the rest of the world!

Begging For Scraps

 

“Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s scraps.”  Then He said to her, “For saying this, you may go. The demon has gone out of your daughter.”  When the woman went home, she found the child lying in bed and the demon gone. (Mk 7:28-30)

While at Mass this morning, I was moved by the encounter from today’s gospel (Mk 7:24-30).  A Syrophoenician woman fell at the Lord’s feet, begging for a demon to be expelled from her daughter.  Jesus responded with a seemingly harsh comment that would have probably angered many of us, “Let the children be fed first. For it is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs.”  Unfazed, the kneeling woman then replied, “Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s scraps.”  Jesus then healed her daughter BECAUSE of what she said.

May I always find myself like that woman, KNEELING before the Lord, HUMBLY accepting His response (even if I don’t like it) and PERSISTENTLY asking for the graces I need to get through the day and remain close to Him!

Don’t Stop Praying!

“God’s going to get sick of hearing from me.  I better stop bothering Him.”

“What’s the use…God never answers my prayers.”

While the above quotes represent two completely opposite reasons for ceasing to pray, they share one thing in common…they’re wrong!

As illustrated by the parable of the Friend at Midnight (Lk 11:5-13), the Lord wants us to be persistent in prayer.  We should never feel that God is “sick of us asking for things”.  Likewise, we shouldn’t stop praying for something because the Lord didn’t respond quickly enough.  As I mentioned on my radio show tonight, if St. Monica had stopped praying for her son Augustine, the Church would have been deprived of one of her greatest theologians!

Jesus loves each of us with an infinite love and wants us to speak to Him every day.  He wants us to turn to Him for our needs and enjoys hearing from us, even when we ask for the same thing each day.  As our relationship with the Lord grows, it would probably be a good idea to mix in a few “Thank you’s” and “Thy Will be done’s” with our numerous requests, but don’t ever stop praying!

Want to hear more about the parable of the Friend At Midnight?  Listen to the podcast of the show:

Listen to internet radio with Gary Zimak on Blog Talk Radio

Can I Pray For You?

Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6)

Tonight at 7 PM Eastern time, I will be at the adoration chapel with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.  I would be honored to pray for all of your intentions.  If you have anything specific that you’d like be to present to Jesus, please comment to this post or email me (gary@followingthetruth.com).  I also encourage you to pray along with me (from wherever you are), even if its only for 5 minutes.

We often make the mistake of failing to pray about the problems and issues in our lives, instead choosing to worry about them or to try and solve them without God’s help.  In the above excerpt from his Letter to the Philippians, St. Paul reminds us that the Lord is anxious for us to ask for His help.  Don’t pass up that golden opportunity!

Please tweet, email, like and share this post with your friends, as I’d like to extend the offer of prayer to as many people as possible!

Peace!