Sarah Palin e-mail message written as though from God
Sarah Palin in Philadelphia last month.
June 15th, 2011
12:03 PM ET

Sarah Palin e-mail message written as though from God

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - Among the 24,000 pages of e-mail from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin released on Friday, one message stands out for its signature line. It's signed by the "Creator" and "Your Heavenly Father." In other words, God.

Palin sent the e-mail to family and friends in April 2008 in anticipation of the birth of her and her husband Todd's fifth child, Trig. Palin knew her son would have Down syndrome, and the e-mail is a meditation on that knowledge and on how others should view him in light of the diagnosis.

"I am blessing you with this surprise baby because I only want the best for you," the e-mail message begins. "I've heard your prayers that this baby will be happy and healthy, and I've answered them because I only want the best for you!"

Palin included most of the e-mail in her 2009 book Going Rogue.

"In my research on Down syndrome, I learned that these special kids most often bring joy into their family’s lives," she wrote in that book, explaning her decision to pen a note in the voice of God. "While they had developmental challenges, they were also affectionate, generous, and cheerful. Rather than focus on what could be perceived as negative, I wanted our loved ones to focus on the fact that this baby, every baby, has purpose, and that not only would he learn from us, but we would learn from him."

"I decided to write the letter as though it were from Trig’s Creator, the same Creator in whom I had put my trust more than thirty years before," she continued in Going Rogue. "I hoped that even though this new baby would present challenges, we’d trust that God knew best, that He didn’t make mistakes."

The e-mail message released last week includes lines that Palin edited out of her book.

For instance, Palin - channeling the voice of God - wrote in her message that a Down syndrome child will make family and friends rethink traditional notions of perfection. The e-mail released last week includes subsequent lines that were edited out of Going Rogue:

But tell me what do you earthlings consider "perfect" or even "normal" anyway? Have you peeked down any grocery store aisle, or school hallway, or into your office lunchroom lately? Or considered the odd celebrities you celebrate as "perfect" on t.v.? Have you noticed I make 'em all shapes and sizes? Believe me, there is no "perfect"!

The full e-mail message is below. What do you think of the idea of penning a note from God? Let us know in comments.

Date: Mon, 7 Apr 2008 14:17:11
Subject: Baby

To the Sisters, Brother, Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and Friends of Trig Paxson Van Palin (or whatever you end up naming him!) :

I am blessing you with this surprise baby because I only want the best for you. I've heard your prayers that this baby will be happy and healthy, and I've answered them because I only want the best for you!

I heard your heart when you hinted that another boy would fit best in the Palin family, to round it out and complete that starting five line-up. Though another girl would be so nice, you didn't think you could ask for what you REALLY wanted, but I knew, so I gave you a boy because I only want the best for you!

Then, I put the idea in your hearts that his name should be "Trig", because it's so fitting, with two Norse meanings: "True" and "Brave Victory". You also have a Bristol Bay relative with that name, so I knew it would be best for you!

Then, I let Trig's mom have an exceptionally comfortable pregnancy so she could enjoy every minute of it, and I even seemed to rush it along so she could wait until near the end to surprise you with the news – that way Piper wouldn't have so long to wait and count down so many days – just like Christmastime when you have to wait, impatiently, for that special day to finally open your gift? (Or the way the Palins look forward to birthday celebrations that go on for three, four days... you all really like cake.) I know you, I knew you'd be better off with just a short time to wait!

Then, finally, I let Trig's mom and dad find out before he was born that this little boy will truly be a GIFT. They were told in early tests that Trig may provide more challenges, and more joy, than what they ever may have imagined or ever asked for. At first the news seemed unreal and sad and confusing. But I gave Trig's mom and dad lots of time to think about it because they needed lots of time to understand that everything will be OK, in fact, everything will be great, because I only want the best for you!

I've given Trig's mom and dad peace and joy as they wait to meet their new son. I gave them a happy anticipation because they asked me for that. I'll give all of you the same happy anticipation and strength to deal with Trig's challenges, but I won't impose on you...

I just need to know you want to receive my offer to be with all of you and help you everyday to make Trig's life a great one.

This new person in your life can help everyone put things in perspective and bind us together and get everyone focused on what really matters.

The baby will expand your world and let you see and feel things you haven't experienced yet. He'll show you what "true, brave victory" really means as those who love him will think less about self and focus less on what the world tells you is "normal" or "perfect". You will grow and be blessed with greater understanding that will be born along with Trig.

Trig will be his dad's little buddy and he'll wear Carhartts while he learns to tinker in the garage. He'll love to be read to, he'll want to play goalie, and he'll steal his mom's heart just like Track, Bristol, Willow and Piper did. And Trig will be the cuddly, innocent, mischievous, dependent little brother that his siblings have been waiting for...in fact Trig will – in some diagnostic ways – always be a mischievous, dependent little brother, because I created him a bit different than a lot of babies born into this world today.

Every child is created special, with awesome purpose and amazing potential. Children are the most precious and promising ingredient in this mixed up world you live in down there on earth. Trig is no different, except he has one extra chromosome. Doctors call it "Down's Syndrome", and Downs kids have challenges, but can bring you much delight and more love than you can ever imagine! Just wait and see, let me prove this, because I only want the best for you!

Some of the rest of the world may not want him, but take comfort in that because the world will not compete for him. Take care of him and he will always be yours!

Trig's mom and dad don't want people to focus on the baby's extra chromosome. They're human, so they haven't known how to explain this to people who are so caring and are interested in this new little Alaskan. Sarah and Todd want people to share in the joy of this gift I'm giving to the Palin family, and the greater Alaska family. Many people won't understand... and I understand that. Some will think Trig should not be allowed to be born because they fear a Downs child won't be considered "perfect" in your world. (But tell me, what do you earthlings consider "perfect" or even "normal" anyway? Have you peeked down any grocery store isle, or school hallway, or into your office lunchroom lately? Or considered the odd celebrities you celebrate as "perfect" on t.v.? Have you noticed I make 'em all shapes and sizes? Believe me, there is no "perfect"!)

Many people will express sympathy, but you don't want or need that, because Trig will be a joy. You will have to trust me on this.

I know it will take time to grasp this and come to accept that I only want the best for you, and I only give my best. Remember though: "My ways are not your ways, my thoughts are not your thoughts... for as the heavens are higher than the earth, my ways are higher than yours!"

I wrote that all down for you in the Good Book! Look it up! You claim that you believe me – now it's time to live out that belief!

Please look to me as this new challenge and chapter of life unfolds in front of you. I promise to equip you. I won't give you anything you can't handle. I am answering your prayers. Trig can't wait to meet you. I'm giving you ONLY THE BEST!

Trig's Creator, Your Heavenly Father

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Politics • Sarah Palin • Uncategorized

soundoff (2,030 Responses)
  1. jdh

    I don't consider myself christian or even hardly religious for that matter but this is disturbing to me. Who thinks its ok to write a letter in Gods name?

    June 15, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Katie

      If you don't "get it", one one will be able to explain it to you. You'd never understand.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
    • jdh

      What are you trying to say? I don't under stand your reply. I do understand what she is trying to do with her little letter, she is attempting to ease the confusion and uncomfortableness of them having a child with downs syndrome and open a dialogue making it ok for family and friends to discuss that. She is trying to let everyone know that they are ok with having a downs child and people shouldn't avoid him or talking about him because of it.

      What I don't get is how she thinks it is ok to pen a letter and sign it in God's name. When I said I wasn't a christian I did not say that I don't know anything about Christianity. One could argue that in this instance she has idolized herself, as the writer of this letter, which would be against the 2nd commandment. You could further argue she is breaking the 3rd commandment as well using the lord's name in vain. Now if she were to say that God "inspired" her to write this letter that would be a different instance but this is written as God in the first person. I don't know about you but I believe that it is sick and wrong to "pretend" to be God even if for a letter with positive intentions. Even a priest or preacher or religious leader wouldn't write a letter and sign it as God.

      June 15, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
    • Bryan

      I'm a Christian jdh, and I completely agree with you. She is, whether intentionally or not, taking the Lord's name in vain by speaking for God...it's unfortunate for her that this became public, but she apparently also put it in her book. I don't find it endearing in the slightest to write this as if she were God.

      June 15, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  2. ck1721

    What! Sarah Palin believes in God and wants her family to be understanding and caring of her child with Downs? That's preposterous! I can't believe that in this day and age in the US, people are still allowed to hold their own beliefs. What is this country coming to, when the majority of Americans have not become left wing, vegan, atheist, communists? I am truly shocked that CNN would post something like this. (My tongue has now caused the inside of my cheek to bleed)

    June 15, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • puckthecat

      CK...your missing the point. I have no issue with Sarah Palin or you for that matter believing in God or whatever the hell you want. The point here is she 'used' the voice of God to manipulate her own familly! She knew her familly (extended)could question her decission to have a high risk pregnacy (accidental or not) but they probably would not feel the same way questioning God. It just smacks of abusiveness and manipulation...do you want this person leading your country...the head of the freee world? Not moi my friend.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • ck1721

      I actually would, but that's probably just one of many things that you and I would disagree on. My tongue-in-cheek commentary was a critique of CNN and how their articles are always "shocked" at anything that Sarah Palin does. Regardless of writing an email in the 3rd person, the media LOVES to point out ANYTHING that Sarah Palin does. It's annoying to say the least. Love her or hate her, the media has an obsession with her that most of us choose not to ignore. (ie our comments on a stupid article about an email she sent to her family. Would this be important if it were anyone OTHER than Sarah Palin? I think not)

      June 15, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  3. SonOfVirginia

    I guess most of you do not care to see Palin in a human light, you have spent so much time at the poison well, you hate even a heart felt and wonderful letter to her family. And you call her stupid?

    June 15, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • puckthecat

      You mean like Sarah Palin, right? Brow beating her familly with a narcocistic email deriding them if they somehow disagree with her. She put herself in that position, no one told her to get pregnant at her age and thus become a high risk. Kudos for her for loving her kid no matter what, but don't sprinkle it the kind od self rightious crap that it was 'God's' big plan...man seriously!

      June 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • SonOfVirginia

      You really are a complete moron!

      June 15, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • puckthecat

      Come on now, we disagree and you call me a moron. Is this the Sarah Palin supporter in you talking? I don't view it as a heartfelt letter, this woman sold her soul long ago to the almighty dollar...she lies, misinterprets, deceives...open your eyes big shooter.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
  4. puckthecat

    I can't understand why she would want to tell people in this way, maybe she was afraid that unless it came from 'God' that the poor little kid would be considered less than perfect, and we all know that no one is going to question 'God' now are they. I find this woman to be very very manipulative, to the point of being dangerous.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
  5. RemNant

    This e-mail has been taken out of context. Whoever chose to use this very personal e mail in order to mock someone/slander them should re-evaluate themselves as a respectful human being. People say they do not like to be judged and yet they are the better advocates for unjust judgments against others.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
  6. Howie

    Can you say 'delusions of grandeur'? But seriously, she's dead wrong about the impact of a Downs baby on a family. Other children will feel neglected and forced to take on adult responsibility far too soon. The Downs child may be happy and kind as a child but they tend to turn sullen, mean, and abusive as they become adults and realize that they will never have the life they see others taking part in. I have had interactions with many Downs victims, as adults they are miserable people who do their best to make everyone around them miserable as well. If you know you are having a Downs baby do yourself and the baby a favor and abort.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • TheWiz

      I hope you are a troll. I really do. Hoping that all children with Down's syndrome get aborted is just a scary sentiment. Absolutely there are grave challenges to a family when a child with Down's is born. Yes, they end up leading challenging lives. But, every person leads a challenging life to a certain degree or other. I know perfectly developmentally healthy people whose company I would rather shun in favor of some folks with Downs. So, I hope you're trolling, otherwise, I would worry about your humanity.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • RemNant

      So your saying the resolution for down syndrome is murder? I am sure there are much better alternatives.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • Katie

      Sounds alot like Hitler's plans for "less than perfect" people. What a jerk. Someone should have aborted you. You have NOTHIHG to offer society.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Proud Aunt to a Niece with Down's

      Howie, you are seriously ill-informed. My niece is a 10 year old girl living with Down's syndrome. She has 2 big sisters and a big brother, as well as many Aunts, Uncles, cousins, Grandparents, and other extended family members who find her to be an absolute joy. She is not a burden. She is not mean, self serving or bitter. And our family is better for having her in it.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • Howie

      @Proud Aunt – check back with me when she is in her late twenties and starts smearing feces on the walls and screaming profanities because you asked her to clear her dishes after supper. Or maybe when she punches your two year old in the face because she is jealous of the attention the baby receives. At 10 I'm sure she is sweet. But I'm also sure that any siblings she has have been forced into more adult roles, and have lost out on attention from their parents due to the additional needs of the downs child.

      To the rest of you, I'm not talking about eliminating people who have the wrong eye/skin/hair color, I am talking about prevent needless suffering by eliminating a badly damaged fetus, thereby opening up the possibility of better luck the next time. If Down's were curable it would be a completely different story, but it isn't.

      June 16, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  7. nufsaid

    Wow, there's some pretty harsh comments obviously coming from people who have a perfect life, with perfect health and a perfect family, and have never had to endure anything remotely as close to having your own child affected by something incurable – wish I was in your shoes! Its obvious intent is to redirect the fear and anxiety that family members, including her, have been experiencing in an effort to provide strength and reassurance that although they cannot change things, everything will be alright.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • Artist

      All things are possible, you just need faith. God can heal.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • darkstar

      All things are possible in Imagination Land.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
    • RemNant

      Amen, the Lord does heal and there is nothing wrong with comforting your family.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • No One Is Safe

      wow, there are some pretty sanctimonious comments coming from some people who have the gall to assume they know what every poster's life is like. how the hell do *you* know whether other folks reading or posting in this thread have similar or equivalent, or even greater challenges in their lives than having a baby with down's?

      awfully presumptuous, aren't we?

      June 23, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
  8. Ken B

    Gr8 stuff!

    June 15, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
  9. Artist


    @Doesn't matter

    "The fact that there are so many reponses to my posts shows the animosity that you all share in your disdain for the Truth..."
    I disdain religion used as an excuse to justify ignorance, bigotry, and hatred.

    Pffffft how can you question what men state is the word of god!!!!!!!! How dare you!

    June 15, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
  10. PeaceOut

    Trig? What an awful name for a child. Why not name him Calculus or Geometry? How about Stats? I know that's not really what the article is about, but still.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  11. ldsmom02

    How sad to comment on this woman's private email to her family. She can email whatever she wants and a meditation on the coming days with her down syndrome child is perfectly human and all right. The problem is not Sarah Palin, but those who continue to harass her thinking that by doing so they can keep her from running for President because they fear she may win. I won't vote for Sarah Palin for president, and I believe that what the media is doing to her with her emails trying to squeeze out of them something that they can skew to present her in a bad light, is a horrible thing to do. You have to ask yourself this question, while I am skewering Sarah Palin, am I a better or worse person than I pretend her to be? You know the answer. She may not be perfect, but those who are skewering her are far less perfect than she is.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • Dee G.

      You're right, she can eamil whatever she wants, but when she puts it out there for all the world to see then she is only inviting ALL comments, be it good or bad.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  12. Tri-G - Trisomy G

    a more appropriate discussion would be – does a sane person fake a pregnancy then write a letter in the voice of god about the "birth" of her child?

    what would god say about someone who makes big $ by giving speeches about a fabricated event?

    June 15, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • Patrick

      Might be a coincidence. Why would a crazy bible beater name her child after the scientific name of the disease? She believes god made her child that way. To acknowledge the genetic cause of the disease would basically cause her to catch on fire and the whole state of Alaska would fall into a huge abyss from which there would be no escape.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • Dani

      its trisomy 21 not G

      June 15, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • Tri-G - Trisomy G

      at dani above: google can be your friend.

      Group A: chromosomes 1-3
      Group B: chromosomes 4-5
      Group C: chromosomes 6-12
      Group D: chromosomes 13-15
      Group E: chromosomes 16-18
      Group F: chromosomes 19-20
      Group G: chromosomes 21-22

      trisomy 21 = trisomy g

      June 15, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  13. jane

    I'm renouncing my citizenship if that peon gets into the white house

    June 15, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • ck1721

      I vote that you take a pre-emptive strike and do it now.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • Zenbutcher

      Hopefully she will and we will then be less one loser in the U.S. once you leave.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • Joe

      I'm right there with you on that one. She's an absolute wacko.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • SonOfVirginia

      Go Palin 2012 then

      June 15, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • ck1721

      Sweet! No more Jane or Joe! We can start having more normal names like Newt, Barack, etc. in the general population. (I'm hoping "Apple" becomes the top name next year)

      June 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
  14. timd

    She should go back to breeding worker bees for the minimum wage sector. Her childeren would fit right in at our local Dairy Queen slinging cheeseburgers and Blizzards.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • Mike Breen

      Blizzard ?....Isn't that what she was going to name her next child ?

      June 15, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
  15. Olaf Big

    This is moving??? I think this is scary. This is either very clumsy postruring or the first signs of pathological delusion.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
    • Neal Kelley

      or psychosis.....

      June 15, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • SonOfVirginia

      Most probably your own stupidity

      June 15, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  16. Brent

    This is a Liberal CNN witch hunt. You are not a news organization anymore you are a left wing propaganda machine. If CNN would have done the same thing when Barry O was running, we would probably have a different president. How can you be part of the Chicago establishment and not have skeletons in your closet? Especially with some of the controversial people he rubbed elbows with and listened to for 20 years.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
    • ck1721

      It's the Communist News Network, not the Conservative News Network.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • joe

      Well hello there, Glen Beck. Now F off.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Patrick

      I suppose you prefer Fox News. Hypocrite. I win.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • ck1721

      How civil of you, Joe. I must have touched a nerve. I'm sorry you don't like Glenn Beck, and I'm sorry that you are okay with harassing one politician but completely ignoring the failings and faults of another. How's that whole hopey changey thing workin' for ya?

      June 15, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
  17. candycane

    Well, Sarah has ALWAYS tried to portray herself as a Prophet! Somehow I think she must be channeling George Burns, the ever famous actor in the movie, "Oh God"!!

    June 15, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  18. Gordon

    How about starting with being responsible with birth control and not getting pregnant that late in life! Everyone knows the risk of down syn. is very high.

    That is like saying the drug baby that will stuggle so much in life is made just like God wanted him to be.

    It amazes me how humans can be so irresponsible and then put a "christian" spin on it as if that was God's original design.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
    • ldsmom02

      Dear Gordon, I gave birth to a beautiful child most surprisingly in my 41st year. This child is by far the most intelligent child in my family with an extremely high IQ. Your comments are horrendous. Most comments here belong in the trash can. To pretend to have the moral and intellectual high road with the trashy comments in this section shows what is truly wrong with this country. It surely isn't Sarah Palin. It's We the People who have our minds totally in the gutter. Guttersnipes all.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • brenda

      I was 39 yrs. old when I gave birth to a beautiful, very intelligent child. Age is not a factor when love is involved. Sarah isn't making you responsible for her child so whats it to you how many she has or when she has them?

      June 15, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
    • Katie

      Too bad your mother wasn't more careful with her birth control.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
    • Dani

      you can get pregnant at any age you idiot

      June 15, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
    • Patrick

      Well Brenda, it is an issue when she uses a baby like Trig (Trisomy G) to gain sympathy for her road to the White House. She named her child after the disease. Who does that? Sorry, but your baby will be born with Cystic Fibrosis. Well, that's too bad, but at least we have a name picked out. We'll call him Freddy Fibrosis, or Cystic Cynthia (if it's a girl). I mean no disrespect to anyone with this disease, but it can't be a coincidence she named her child Trig. Trisomy 21 or Trisomy G is the proper name for Down's Syndrome. Sorry, but I win this argument.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Patrick

      Dani, you're wrong. Women can't get pregnant at any age. Once menopause hits it's all over. Women are born with a certain number of eggs that they will have the rest of their life. That's all they get. Once they're gone, no more babies. Understand? But men on the other hand, we can spread our seed until we die. That's why men feel the need to cheat. It's not because we're jerks, it's just the way nature intended us to be. Or if you're a bible beater, the way GOD intended us to be. I win.

      June 15, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Idsmom and Brenda
      It's great that your children are healthy and happy, but there are indeed significant risks to a late in life pregnancy which cannot be ignored, even when "love is involved".
      According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a 40-year-old woman has a 1 in 156 chance of having a baby with Down syndrome. By age 45, her odds rise to 1 in 40.
      Mothers over the age of 40 are at greater risk of gestational diabetes, placental abnormalities, high blood pressure, miscarriage and stillbirth. Their offspring are at higher risk for genetic disorders, premature birth and low birth weight.

      June 16, 2011 at 10:04 am |
  19. Alaskanator

    I bet she knew this would be made public one day...

    June 15, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • ck1721

      Of course she did, she was the one who made it public when she put it in her book. Is this the worst thing they found while diving through her emails? Some controversy.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
  20. God

    If this woman becomes the prez of usa I will be truly depressed and buy one of those under 10,000 bunkers

    June 15, 2011 at 3:19 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.