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September 29th, 2013
08:40 AM ET

From grief to grace: Wife of Amish schoolhouse shooter breaks her silence

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog co-editor

Lancaster County, Pennsylvania (CNN) - Among the flowers and plants in Marie Monville’s sunny yard sits a rosebush, a gift from her first husband, Charlie.

A few years ago, Monville painstakingly unearthed the roots and transplanted the bush from her old house 10 miles away - a house that Charlie had thrown into tumult and grief.

The bush’s prickles recall the pain she and her family have endured, Monville said, and its peach-colored blossoms offer a yearly reminder that God creates new life from old.

After years of silence, Monville is now telling a story of her own.

It’s the story of how a milkman’s daughter became a murderer’s wife, and how she found a divine calling after a devastating tragedy.

“If this wasn’t my life,” Monville said during a recent interview in her kitchen, family pictures smiling from the fridge, “I never would have expected it to look this beautiful.”

On October 2, 2006, Charlie Roberts - then Monville’s husband - burst into a one-room Amish schoolhouse in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania, with a handgun, a 12-gauge shotgun, a rifle, cans of black powder, a stun gun, two knives, a toolbox and restraint devices.

Roberts ordered a teacher, a teacher’s aide and the boys to leave, then bound 10 young schoolgirls and lined them up against the blackboard.

He boarded the windows, apparently preparing for a long siege, but as police surrounded the schoolhouse, Roberts shot all 10 girls before killing himself. Five girls died; the others were severely wounded.

The gentle, quiet man who had shared Monville's bed, children and life was now a mass murderer, guilty of unfathomable evil.

In mere hours, Monville lost her husband, and her children lost their father. Her close-knit community was terrorized and her family's name disgraced. Her innocence was despoiled, and her evangelical faith tested.

“I felt deserted, left behind to bear the weight of the world’s judgment and questions alone,” Monville writes in “One Light Still Shines,” her new book about the shooting and its aftermath, “and I felt that weight pressing me down.”

Stepping out of the shadows

After the shooting, Monville tried to keep her family, especially her three young children, out of the public eye.

But with the release of “One Light,” which goes on sale Monday, Monville is stepping out of the shadows, sharing her story in deeply personal detail.

Zondervan, one of the country’s largest Christian publishing houses, won't say how many copies it plans to print. But it has launched a “robust” marketing and publicity campaign, with a billboard in New York’s Times Square and interviews with TV networks, including CNN’s Piers Morgan.

“It will sell millions of copies," said Donald Kraybill, co-author of "The Amish" and a professor at Elizabethtown College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. "Millions."

Not only is Monville’s story powerful and largely untold, it also hits a burgeoning market for book publishers, Kraybill said: the cross-section of evangelical spirituality and interest in all things Amish.

Christian fiction best-seller lists brim with Amish romance novels, largely because of their large evangelical readership, which scholars trace to the 2006 shooting and its stunning postlude of Amish forgiveness.

Monville said she kept silent for so long because that story - the grace and compassion the Amish offered her family - was already making headlines around the world.

“There wasn’t much more for me to say,” she said.

Even if there had been more to say, the intensely private Monville was reluctant to speak publicly. Shy and quiet, she sometimes joked that the label under her high-school yearbook picture should have read, “Most Likely to be Forgotten.”

But as the shooting’s psychological wounds began to heal, Monville said she heard God calling her to a new mission: to share her message of hope and to tell others that, even after Charlie's crushing actions, her family not only survived, they thrived.

“I now saw a grand purpose in telling my story,” Monville writes, “I wasn’t afraid anymore.”

Walking on water

The morning of October 2, 2006, was sunny and warm, Monville recalls, the trees in her rural neighborhood radiant with red and golden leaves.

Monville, then Marie Roberts, was living her deepest childhood dreams.

At 28, she had a vibrant church community and spiritual life, a dutiful husband who doted on their three young children and a home next-door to her grandparents in idyllic Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where she was born and raised.

Charlie Roberts, her husband of nearly a decade, drove a truck that delivered milk to nearby dairies, just as Marie’s family had done for generations. He sometimes brooded over the death of their first daughter, who was born three months premature and died after just 20 minutes, but he usually pulled out from these bouts of depression.

On the morning of the shooting, Marie led a prayer group at a local church, where they asked God to keep schoolchildren safe.

As usual, she and Charlie later walked their two oldest children, then 7 and 5, to the bus stop, kissing them goodbye before Charlie left for work.

At 11 a.m., as Marie was pouring herself a cup of coffee, Charlie called.

“I had never heard Charlie’s voice sound like that before,” Monville writes, “not in almost 10 years of marriage. Something was horribly wrong.”

Charlie told Marie he was not coming home. He left a note explaining everything, he said. Marie pleaded with him to come home, but he hung up.

According to Pennsylvania State Police, Charlie also told Marie he had molested young family members two decades before and had daydreamed of doing so again. Monville said she left that out of her new book because police found the claims to be false.

“Charlie said a lot of things on the phone or the letter that didn’t make a lot of sense,” Monville said in an interview. “His mind was filled with all of the things he was planning to do, so he wasn’t in a place of being OK.”

The three-page letter Charlie left for Marie said she was the perfect wife, but the death of their firstborn child made him enraged at God.

“I am sorry to put you and the kids in this position but I feel that this is the best and only way,” Charlie wrote. “I love all of you and this is why am I doing this.”

Marie called 911. Sirens wailed in the distance. Hanging up the phone, she stood in the living room, staring at her ceiling fan, and prayed.

Monville calls this her “walk on water” moment, recalling when Jesus challenged the disciples to show their faith by following his footsteps across the Sea of Galilee.

“I was faced with two choices, and only two,” she said.

“I could choose to believe that everything written about God in the pages of the Word were true, and that he was going to rescue me and my family. Or I could choose to believe that we were going down like the fastest sinking ship.”

The falling flower 

Raised a churchgoer in deeply religious Lancaster County, where churches far outnumber bars, Monville said she always enjoyed a close relationship with God, hearing his voice call to her, feeling his embrace during prayer and worship.

Even after the death of her firstborn, whom they named Elise, and a later failed pregnancy, Monville said she kept hoping that God held better days in store.

But Charlie’s faith faltered, and he shrugged off her pleas to talk to a pastor, counselor or friend about his deepening depression.

“He was angry at God, which I didn’t realize in those days,” Monville said. “I just thought he wasn’t connected to the Lord in the ways I was. The harder I pushed, the more he withdrew.”

Counselors later said that Charlie Roberts likely suffered for years with untreated clinical depression over the death of Elise, which led to a psychotic break with reality, Monville said.

“I did not know the man who went into the schoolhouse and did the things he did there,” she said. “I did not know that Charlie.”

Counselors told Monville that depression can be difficult to diagnose, especially when a sufferer is trying hard to hide it. “There were a lot of things I asked myself,” Monville said. “How did I not see this? What are the signs I missed?”

Those questions didn’t yield easy answers, just more difficult questions, she said: How could God allow this to happen? What should she tell her children? Would people hold her responsible for Charlie’s actions? Could she rebuild her life in Lancaster?

The community - including the Amish - showered her family with gifts, meals and love after the shooting, Monville recalls. They waved hello on the way to the bus stop, dropped by to see if she needed groceries, encouraged her to stay in Lancaster.

Still, Monville had always been a people-pleasing middle child, shyly hoping she could somehow escape the world’s gaze. Now she was the center of attention, with news vans parked in her neighborhood and reporters prowling around her yard.

With her newfound notoriety came questions from strangers that made her skin crawl. Did Charlie have life insurance? How do you sleep at night knowing what your husband did? 

In fact, Monville didn’t sleep at night. She tossed and turned, grieving over her husband and the deaths he caused, and worrying about her children’s future.

But with Scripture and prayer, in reaching out to God and hearing his reply in shouts and whispers, feeling his fatherly care in signs and wonders that people of lesser faith might take for coincidences, Monville said she found healing.

On the day of the shooting, after Charlie’s frightening call, she saw a vision of God’s hand catching a falling flower petal just before it hit the ground, Monville said.

And that’s just what God did for her, she said, every time her spirits fell.

She saw God's hand when the Amish attended Charlie's funeral, when neighbors sent baskets of food, and strangers filled her mailbox with supportive notes.

Most importantly, Monville said, she felt God's strength when she had to tell her children that their father had made some very bad choices, and some people had died, and he had died, too.

“Over and over again," Monville writes, "(God) broke though my pain, revealed his presence, and restored my hope.”

New love

Along with restored hope came another miracle, Monville said: She no longer cared what other people thought.

Marie needed that fearlessness when, just four months after the shooting, she told her family she was engaged to a family friend, Dan Monville.

She and Dan, a divorcé, had bonded after the shooting as they supervised play dates with their young children. She felt a connection with Dan as their families bonded, she said, which ripened into love.

Maybe Dan was the right man, her family said, but it was definitely the wrong time.

Marie had doubts, too. It was so soon after the shooting. But she felt God whispering to her, telling her that Dan was the man she should marry.

Marie said she wrestled with that revelation, fasting and praying for days. Again, one of those signs and wonders - the kind that others might take for happenstance - broke into her life.

Early one morning in December 2006, Marie awoke to hear her Christmas tree tumble with a crackling crash.

Each year, she and Charlie had exchanged Christmas ornaments, their own family tradition. Only two broke when the tree fell, Monville said, the first and last Charlie had given her.

“At the precise moment I noticed this,” she writes, “I heard the words 'It is finished' echo through my heart and mind.”

Dan and Marie were married in May 2007, seven months after the schoolhouse shooting. They now live in the house with Charlie's rosebush, their five children are healthy and happy.

Joyful messenger

Sipping a cup of coffee in her tidy kitchen last week, Monville said she relishes her return to routine, dropping the kids off at school, grocery shopping. "Normal mom" stuff.

She keeps the letter Charlie left and reads it from time to time, even though some parts leave her feeling shaky. Monville also keeps cartons full of letters sent from strangers around the world. She tries not to dread the arrival of October 2, but still finds her eyes fixed to the clock each year, remembering when Charlie left her work, when he called, the day's devastation.

Monville said she has spent years trying to remove the “the shooter’s wife” label - but in a way, she embraces it now, as long as she gets to tell the rest of the story.

It’s the story of how the milkman’s timid daughter, the murderer’s grieving wife, became of all things a joyful messenger, telling everyone who’d listen about the grace of God’s love.

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Belief • Books • Christianity • Death • Faith

soundoff (1,271 Responses)
  1. Jand

    Harry, you are so right. A pedophile child murdering piece of garbage deserves no justification, glad he is dead.

    September 29, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
  2. SkepticalOne

    Sounds like she is nearly as crazy as her first husband.

    September 29, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
  3. Jand

    He also molested those poor girls before he killed them, her husband was a murdering pedophile, no matter how she dresses him up. If he didn't die, bet she would be visiting him in jail and sending her mushy letters. She is lucky she lived among the Amish as most people would not be so forgiving. I wouldn't save anything from him and wonder if he ever touched his own children.

    September 29, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
  4. smh

    This Charlie person is an example of the harm done by religions.
    If you place the blame for all actions outside yourself, you then become a powerless leaf tossed on an incomprehensible wind.
    The Imaginary Sky Fairy did not kill their infant daughter, did not molest girls, did not cause evil thoughts, did not cause evil actions, and did not cause people to forgive evil actions.
    Any good done by Marie was done by her alone, because she is a decent person.
    The Imaginary Sky Fairy, in fact, did absolutely nothing because it is imaginary.

    September 29, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Patti Butler

      I am sure the negative reaction published here is the very reason she wrote the book. I also believe here in-lies the separation of Gods flock of Sheep from Satans' goats.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Jand

      Does she admit to him being a pedophile? Couldn't finish all the bs in her long ass dribble.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • BoogerFree

      How sad for you.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
  5. Ellen

    Not a word about the pain suffered by the parents and siblings of the murdered children. So how is this only about her?
    I have lost a child, I know how deep that hurt goes, you don't get over it. But it's okay because she's ok?
    This article made me angry.

    September 29, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
    • moemoe

      ask stanky

      lol

      September 29, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Leona

      I agree Ellen, she sounds like a remarkably self centered person to me.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
      • BldrRepublican

        Ya- judgement coming from you and Ellen, who are sitting in a comfy home, casting your judgement from thousands of miles away.

        And yet you claim YOU'RE sympathetic. No, you're hypocritical.

        September 29, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
        • Leona

          🙂 How cute! A troll!

          September 29, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
  6. TheLocNar

    Religion of peace!

    September 29, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • AE

      Peace (God)!

      September 29, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      There are no religions of peace. The history of religions proves it.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
      • gogo

        prove it, filthy lying hog!

        lol

        on your mark!

        September 29, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
        • Freedom Fascist

          One religion with no blood on its hands, I just want one...(god those crickets sound heavenly, don't they?)

          September 29, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
      • Jand

        You are so right.

        September 29, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
  7. Peter Bishop

    Too bad so many have the naive thought that being a Christian is a membership in some kind of club that means you aren't supposed to have hardship in life. People want to make God out to be a genie that is supposed to do their bidding and make their lives perfect and protected. How often do you listen to the ant in your backyard tell you what you should do?

    September 29, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
    • G to the T

      OK – but let's say I've made a special effort to let the ants know that I love them and want what's best for them. Now I notice a frog coming along the lane, eyeing the ants. Should I use my power to shield those I love or should I let the frog each some of them as an object lesson?

      October 1, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
  8. murcielago

    Now when Dan loses interest in her, they will divorce and 7 months later another marriage will happen....

    Just another american soap opera of life.

    September 29, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
  9. Edward

    Capitalizing financially on a tragedy!

    September 29, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
  10. Rob

    I don't see any mention here of the families of the children that were killed. I hope her book is not just all about her feelings and how great things are for her now, but that she discusses how those families are doing also. Theirs is the bigger tragedy.

    September 29, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • Reality Check

      Theirs is not her story, so how could she or even why should she write that story?

      September 29, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  11. Ryan

    What a load. I have nothing against the woman, but where was her god when 5 school children were slaughtered? I guess "god" works in mysterious ways....

    September 29, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
    • wallstreetcrime

      Agreed.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
  12. diablo135

    Damn, that dude moved in fast, like the guy from Ghost

    September 29, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
  13. LikeToBeAnOakTree

    What is wrong with most of you commenters?! Why all the cynicism? Grow up!

    September 29, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • Lord Yabu

      What's wrong you say ??? How about the 7 month remarriage and back to church we go angle.

      September 29, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
    • BeATree

      What's with all the noisy trees? Just grow up and be quiet.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
  14. Lord Yabu

    I'm with Lord Toronaga.

    September 29, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
  15. Lord Toronaga

    So she marries only 7 months after the shooting.... Hmmm. She certainly is a survivor... And back to church once again.

    September 29, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
  16. musings

    I wonder if, in some communities, there is no word for "depression" and no concept that it has to do with the body's response to grief, loss, even some other physical factors? Lacking that language, she tried to hook her husband up with pastoral counseling, etc. (although one hopes pastors are up on the realities of depression and thus provide a source of help). There's something of a Flannery O'Connor plot in this story – because she knew rural Georgia was like this woman's description of rural Pennsylvania. Both she and O'Connor ascribe a lot of the drama to God's action on man – even ones doing really bad stuff.

    September 29, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
  17. Anna

    Wow. I'm no bible thumper. Usually religious nuts freak me out. But I'm not understanding the cynicism and hate here. This lady was not the shooter. She has no way of knowing her husband was going to do what he did. She went through something pretty incredibly horrific – becoming the wife of a mass murderer and child killer and losing her husband, all on the same day.
    But she survived it, and stories of survival can be inspirational, whether you believe in God or not.
    Apparently she feels her story can help others. I don't get a greed vibe here. She's remarried and seems to be doing okay with her life. I don't think it's about the money.
    I won't read the book. I'd rather read survival stories about personal strength, not faith in a deity. But many people will find her words extremely comforting in an often challenging world. What's so horrible about that? Isn't it a good thing?

    September 29, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • Kirsten

      Well said.

      September 29, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
      • Shalom987789

        Well said, Anna!

        September 29, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • TiglathPileser

      Its only a 'good thing' if it has nothing to do with God and somehow fits into todays warped, cynical view of the world. Im thrilled this woman has managed to come through this horror, sadly many seem like they would be much happier if she hadn't.

      September 29, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
    • Andy

      What is wrong with the book and the lady is this: many religious people, and many unreligious
      people as well, will find the book self-serving, insensitive, and seemingly delusional where she
      referred to her revelations. The thought of the possibility that it is written with $ in mind makes
      the feeling all the worse.

      September 29, 2013 at 7:42 pm |
  18. ComeOnMan

    Now lookahere, I aint no fan of the Christians but.......... This woman's story may benefit someone else who may have to live through something that horrific. And we need to remove all of any lasting stigmas about mental illness. This man needed severe treatment and I pray he did not choose to ONLY pray about it

    September 29, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
  19. kosh

    Wow, the families of the girls who were killed or wounded forgave this lady, but people here talk like she's Satan herself? Must be a lot of perfect people posting here today. I'm a straight on atheist and I believe I have more respect for her beliefs and story than many of the "believers" here. Y'all are the reason that 90% of "Christians" have nothing but my sympathy for what the church has done to them. This lady seems to be in the 10% that I call true believers and I actually respect them for their strength of character and conviction. Oh, and the symptoms of a nervous breakdown/psychotic break are not easily seen in real life, stop getting your psychiatric training from Law and Order or CSI. Cheers.

    September 29, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
    • musings

      I do agree that one of the remarkable things about this terrible event is the way the Amish families reached out to this widow of their daughters' killer. That is really strong, and it seems based on a worldview some of us have unfortunately lost. They understood that both they and she had a lot to grieve for, and they stepped in to help. I stand in awe of them and hope her book gives them credit for helping her to get through (although all parties would give God the credit).

      September 29, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
      • Anna1953

        I agree with you. I'm waiting to see if she gives a "portion" of the income from her book BACK to the Amish - just as they (unbelievably) gave a "portion" of the money donated to their community by many people (including me) to Marie and her children.

        September 29, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
    • Shalom987789

      Thank you for your comment! You are to be commended for you wisdom and compassion!

      September 29, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
  20. Charlie

    It takes great courage,to survive such tragedy and her deep christian faith,pull her thru,As horrible as the whole event was,she was not,in any way responsible,and shouldn't feel guilty of her late husbans's actions.
    Yes,there's a lot we can learn from her experiences.

    September 29, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
    • Harry Cline

      To funny, now she's the survivor uh. Takes greater courage to admit she married a creep. But then how could she. She married young and never got beyond her own neighborhood.

      September 29, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
      • Shalom987789

        And how may I ask did you determine that her first husband was a "creep"? Had you met him in his younger year? Have you any personal contact with him or his family? How does marrying "young" from her own "neighborhood" serve to make him a "creep"?

        September 29, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
        • Harry Cline

          What do we really know about anything at 18 ? I'm over the hill and still learning. Point being she married him most likely to get out of the house and on her own. All she really knew about him was his name. And that's not to say we ever really know all about anyone.

          But her first marriage comes off typical, got laid and thought she was in love. (and probably pregnant as well)

          September 29, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
    • AE

      The Amish forgiveness is amazing in this story.

      September 29, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
      • Harry Cline

        ...and that is truly the only story worth telling.. Not some guilt trip release biography so that young and dumb bimbo can feel better about herself. No doubt she will also fill her children's head with a tale of 'daddy had a break down".

        But he was a good and decent man who love you all.

        September 29, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
        • AE

          The Amish believe showing forgiveness shows us an example of what God's love looks like.

          September 29, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
        • Zeb

          That and your god'll torture you for all time if you do wrong in your 72 year life expectancy here. "Love" like that I can do without.

          September 29, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
        • AE

          I didn't like when my parents sp.anked me when I misbehaved as a child. Turned out the discipline was good for me. God's love is like that. Not sure why you think you deserve to be tortured for all time. What did you do?

          September 29, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
        • Commenter

          AE,
          " Not sure why you think you deserve to be tortured for all time. What did you do?"

          According to your book, all it takes is not believing.

          September 29, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
        • AE

          Where does it say that?

          September 29, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
        • Commenter

          AE,

          For one, 2 Thessalonians:

          7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,

          8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:

          9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;

          September 29, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
        • AE

          If you hate God, spending eternity with Him will be horrible? Is that what those passages mean?

          September 29, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
        • Jen

          The violent and vengeant parts are pretty clear there AE. Very plainly so, and in other bible passages too. It would be hard to conclude from them that your god of your myths is anything other than a vicious, hateful being.

          September 29, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
        • AE

          I don't have an angry, vengeful God. He is full of grace and mercy. But He is also just.

          September 29, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
        • Bob

          AE's ass hole of a god is "just" and "merciful", and fully qualified as a human rights abusing criminal, as these direct passages from both foul testaments of the Christian book of nasty clearly show:

          Numbers 31:17-18
          17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
          18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

          Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

          Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

          Leviticus 25
          44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
          45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
          46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

          Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

          Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

          And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

          So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

          Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
          Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
          http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

          September 29, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
        • AE

          Can you put those verses in context? What happened before and after each example you provided?

          Also, I know amputees who say God is real and he has healed them. Are you an amputee?

          September 29, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
        • Bob

          AE, anecdotal evidence is not valid evidence. Statistically, your story about amputees is meaningless. As to context, that has already been addressed later in my post. Again, since you missed it the first time, read through about context and other problems with your disgusting bible:

          Numbers 31:17-18
          17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
          18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

          Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

          Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

          Leviticus 25
          44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
          45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
          46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

          Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

          Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

          And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

          So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

          Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
          Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
          http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

          September 29, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
        • My Dog is a jealous Dog

          AE

          I presume that your amputee friends meant they were healed in a spiritual way and not physically. I have heard of one instance of a man regenerating a finger by using a powder that prevented the wound from scarring as a defense mechanism. I am not sure of the progress on this, but at some point, I am sure that science will be able to regrow amputated limbs. When that day comes and prayer has never regrown a limb, will you denounce this advancement the way religious types denounced airplanes. Would it change your opinion on the power of prayer, or would you just say that your prayer was answered in the form of skilled and dedicated doctors and scientists that provided the procedure?

          September 29, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
      • Harry Cline

        And yet they are some of the crookedest to deal with in business from what I've heard, go figure.

        September 29, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
        • Shalom987789

          Obviously you haven't "heard" much! Seems to me every few days there's a story of some banker, stock broker, ponzi leader who has a "crooked" business. However, when a "religious" person does make a mess, seems the media and others do give it extra attention and critizism. But that's fine with me, not everyone who is supposed to be impartial in their reporting, is "perfect" like some of those posting on here seem to think they are.

          September 29, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
        • Harry Cline

          OH no doubt about that.
          But hanging the fish signs out side your business's in the 1980's became all the rage. Later most realized those we're the ones to avoid at all cost.

          Hiding behind a God like a terrorist does. Imagine if everyone just simply took responsibility for their own lives and actions. This woman in the story should have simply kept her mouth shut and moved.

          Screw her reasoning. I'm not interested in it, and even less thrilled she try's to pawn her mistakes and poor judgement off on God.
          She needs to ask God to forgive her as well., never mind the creep she married.

          September 29, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.