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. Chris

    I'm not a religious person at all - and i definately have not voted for Sarah Palin in the past - but from a 'strictly leadership' view - that email presents a side of Sarah Palin that can do nothing but impress others of us who have leadership type roles! Lead from the front, walk beside me, or get the bleep out of the way...

    June 15, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  2. Topix

    weiner, weiner, weiner

    June 15, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  3. havetolaugh

    Way to try to twist the message of the email, CNN,with your snide headline.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  4. fred

    Problem is we seem to be out of people that are good and yet willing to run for office. Oh my did Jesus say none are good……..well he was right. We have a problem in that we cannot agree on what is good. We cannot agree on what is good because that is a Divine absolute of God. We do not agree on God and a few think there is no such thing as Divine. So our arguments always break down into childish positions. Why, because without the wisdom of God we are on our own. Without Divine limits we create our own way that generally follows our hearts desire. No unity means we are divided and a nation divided will fall no matter what your belief is.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  5. Eric

    Bring on the CNN hate-muckers!

    June 15, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  6. Runmoe

    Yep..................She's still nuts.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:43 pm |

    I have only recently begun to read CNN online & I must say the way they attempt to sensationalize their headlines & articles leaves me with a great deal of disrespect for their writers. I think Mr. Gilgoff knows Ms Palin was not acting like God, nor being a channel of God like a prophet. This form of writing is simply a medium for exploring feelings; it also helps clarify our thoughts & directions about God's purpose for us.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
    • Runmoe

      @TRY2BKIND.............You're nuts too. Religious voodoo.

      June 15, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
    • Ryan

      Well gods purpose for "us"? That's if you believe it such a character. I don't think this Alaskan woman is worth talking about in the least (not even going to mention her name) but let's becareful of how we use the words US with a god. Not everyone thinks there is such a thing at all.

      June 15, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
    • Ryan

      I wish we did not have such a blind following of deities.....everything would be sooooo much better in this world. EVERYTHING. Smarter people, less wars through out history, better awarness about health, better environmental views, list goes on and on and on. You name it.

      June 15, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
  8. FEAR

    What an idiot. I wish Palin would just disappear off the face of the earth along with her whole damn brood.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  9. geoffrey

    Lets focus on the families who lost their jobs to foreign interest. Lets focus on becoming more energy efficient like Germany by the year 2025. Lets focus on the nonperishable goods made from China that load our shelves in places like Walmart. Lets not use a child with special needs when it comes to serious economic discussions. Please go away! We on't have time for religious zealots.......Congress please wake up and lets start focusing on generating revenue through the sale of American goods an services to foreign markets! That would include Demo's, Repub and True Leaders who love more than just the Founing Fathers of America....Black, White & Brown!

    June 15, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  10. Dustin

    Sounds like a bunch of selfish BS. There doesn't seem to be any hint of concern for the child in this, just the ways in which the child can be a benefit to everyone else, as a gift, as a challenge, as an example to others, etc. Well congratulations, Sarah, you gave birth to a novelty.

    Happy now?

    June 15, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  11. TexasTarotReader

    I just realized that my very first post to a CNN story was in defense of Palin. I'm going to hell. Straight to hell. :hangs head in partisan shame:

    June 15, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  12. garc

    I told you she was hearing voices.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  13. stella southwick

    As a Christian it offends me, as always, she is ignorant and arrogant

    June 15, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • bristol

      as a christian you are closed minded and miserable

      June 15, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  14. Gary

    It is a nice e-mail which inspires me to write a letter in similar fashion for my beautiful 10 month old daughter. It will be a real nice letter to give to her later for her to read probably on her 16TH Birthday.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • Mark C

      At which point she will realize (in the extremely unlikely event she hasn't figured it out already) what a freak her father is.

      June 15, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  15. Laura

    Look, although this letter proves her battiness, it also proves that she is a loving mother. So while I will resist any attempts by this woman to reach positions of actual power, and giggled a bit at the ridiculousness of this letter, it makes sense. She was, in her way, trying to reach out to her family to help them embrace someone in their family who was born with a disability. In principle, that's admirable. Is it presidential? No. Is it news? No. Is it fine? Yeah.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  16. harvey n

    The fantasy of religious people that they or their leaders know what God wants and can speak for him, although this is couched ,is old news.this lady has an endless supply of malarkey

    June 15, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  17. ami

    the woman is an absolute moron but i do not doubt that she is a loving mother to her own kids. everyone calm the hell down and stop freaking out about this non-story.

    that being said, while i sympathize with her raising a down's syndrome afflicted child, this email is a bit... disingenuous at best. down's syndrome kids can indeed bring joy and happiness and are usually very sweet people but they must be taken care of for their entire lives and will most likely die of alzheimer's disease in their 40s or 50s, if they are able to live that long. i don't believe in god but if i did i'm pretty sure that this would be labeled as a mistake or at least a very bad thing. but if she needs to believe that god "made" her baby this way then so be it. it's a common emotional tactic and doesn't really speak ill of her.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  18. harvey n

    The fantasy of religious people that they or their leaders know what God wants and can speak for him, although this is couched ,is old news.this lasy has an endless supply of malarky

    June 15, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
  19. Loose Era

    Do your job, LSM –

    that Email was written ELEVEN DAYS before Tri-G was born, five weeks prematurely...How did Sarah know then he would be 'early"? How did she know more than six weeks before his due date that the pregnancy would be "easy and quick"?

    And if she did anticipate his premature arrival, what in the HECk was she doing in Texas leaking amniotic fluid, giving a speech and then flying from Dallas to Seattle, and Seattle to Anchorage, and driving to Wasilla? Not being pregnant at all, or actively trying to birth him in an airplane to deny him the medical treatment he would obviously need, being DS and preemie?

    And where is the lil' guy, while his mom is driving a bus all over the US of A? Anybody seen him?

    June 15, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
  20. epona

    I do not like Palin as a political figure because she is stupid. But this is her way of communicating stuff to her child. I am not religious either, but if this is how she feels about God and telling her child why he is here I really do not care. I would care more is she was beating the child. This is more of a tender personal mother son thing. Not political.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
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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.