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July 20th, 2011
06:20 AM ET

Finding God in the Mississippi Delta

By Tommy Andres, CNN

Moorhead, Mississippi (CNN) - The Mississippi Delta is the kind of place where everyone shows up for a funeral.

It was on such a day in 1997 that Lucas McCarty and his grandfather had come to pay their respects to a young man who'd been killed in a car crash.

John Woods was there to bury his son.

Lucas and John had met a handful of times before, but that's the day John found his new son and Lucas his "black daddy" – each one delivered in his own way from a tragic past.

John worked for Lucas’ grandfather on his catfish farm as an “oxygen man." Catfish are fickle creatures, and if they don’t have enough oxygen, the whole lot of them can go belly up in minutes.

He’d gotten the job a decade earlier after getting out of jail. John had killed his brother-in-law on a lonely Delta road, according to T.R. Pearson's “Year of Our Lord,” which tells about John and Lucas. John had been indicted and tried for first-degree murder, but the trial resulted in a hung jury. He was then indicted and tried for first-degree manslaughter - and this time the jury found him not guilty. He was a free man.

At about the time John was starting a new life, Lucas’ life was almost ending before it could even begin.

Elizabeth Lear McCarty’s heart sank when her son was born, the familiar cry of a baby’s entrance into the world replaced by phrases like “no heartbeat” and “no spontaneous respiration.”

Elizabeth says a botched delivery deprived her son of oxygen at birth, damaging his brain.

He was born “gray and dead,” she says.

There would be unanswered questions and a lawsuit, and pretty soon it would become clear that Lucas would never be like other kids.

Lucas has cerebral palsy, a condition suffered when a baby's brain is deprived of oxygen, usually at birth. The condition began to show its devastating effects more and more as he matured.

He never learned to walk, read or write. Even eating was a challenge. It looked like Lucas was destined to spend the rest of his days in a wheelchair, dependent on others for his most basic needs.

Though he has never spoken a word in his life, at age 5 he found a way to say anything he needed to. It would take him years to master it, but the machine he shied away from at first, slowly became his link to his family and the world.

Based on Mayan hieroglyphs, Minspeak allows Lucas to create full sentences by pushing a series of pictures.

If he wants to say the word food, he pushes the picture of an apple. If he wants to say eat, he pushes the picture of an apple followed by the picture of a man running, called the “action man.” If he just wants to say apple, he pushes apple twice.

It can get fairly complex to an outsider. A hamburger, for example, is apple + scale + treasure chest. Somehow, this all makes sense if you’ve never learned to read or write with words.

Lucas grew up going to an Episcopal church, but his mom says he never liked it all that much. He was antsy and easily irritated, and sitting quietly for hours not only was difficult, but practically ran counter to his genetic predisposition.

“His sister kept his hands down the whole time he was at our church,” Elizabeth says.

‘My calling is singing the gospel’

At the funeral for his son, John Woods was touched by the presence of Lucas and his grandfather, James Lear.

“I looked around the church and Mr. Lear was there. Lucas was there. That’s to show you an old black man like me has some dear, sweet white friends,” John says.

Afterward, John began coming to the McCarty house to sing gospel songs with Lucas.

“He really couldn't do much else,” John says. “We would sing songs like ‘God’s Got It All In Control’ ” - no doubt a message that, at the time, offered equal comfort to both of them.

John asked Elizabeth if he could take Lucas to Easter service at Trinity House of Prayer, where he was the music director. John had been saved at Trinity, and he hoped Lucas could be too.

At that first service, John carried Lucas, and because of John’s position as music director, they sat in the deacon’s box, a spot reserved for congregational royalty.

“The Trinity House of Prayer congregation are such a loving environment of peoples,” John says. “A man can be a sinner, a whiner, (but) when they bring him into Trinity House of Prayer he will feel nothing but pure and genuine love.”

The love Lucas felt most was for the music. He fit right in with the loud expressionism and theatrics, and adored the soulful singing. Trinity changed his image of church.

“Shouting, dancing, falling out and speaking in tongues is real church,” Lucas says through his device.

Trinity House of Prayer is known for its choir. Tucked deep into the fertile soil and God-fearing air of the Mississippi Delta, the church is nestled on a flat, barren landscape, one of hundreds in a region where faith is the answer to poverty and hardship.

The chapel isn’t much to look at - an old gray building surrounded by a graveyard of dilapidated vehicles and rusted-out farm equipment. On the inside, windows are covered in a clear red film, a cheap alternative to stained glass. And on a sunny day, the faded carpet and beautiful wood pews light up with a glow that can feel transcendent.

Most notably, Trinity’s congregation is all black – with one exception. Every Sunday for the past 15 years, Lucas has shown up, sometimes carried, sometimes crawling, but always ready to put his “foot on the devil’s head.”

It’s a bit of a peculiar sight, a white man in a black church, on his knees, wailing indecipherably, but passionately into the microphone in the corner of the choir stand. He knows every word, he just can’t say them, but that sure doesn’t stop him from finding his voice.

“My calling is singing the gospel,” he says.

A warm, cleansing oil

Four months before Lucas was born, John Woods prayed for the first time for as long as he could remember.

The hard crack of the pistol, pulled from his waistband and fired without aim on that balmy Father's Day in 1987, rang through his head over and over.

John didn’t know if the man he had shot was dead, but he knew he was in trouble. He and his wife, Mary Frances, cried together until a squad car pulled into his driveway and took John away in handcuffs.

According to John, he heard his sister's husband had beaten her with a pipe, and John wanted to get even. He tracked the man down at a diner to give him a piece of his mind, the gun in his waistband providing punctuation for each cautionary sentence.

But according to John’s description in Pearson's "Year of our Lord," his brother-in-law didn’t take too kindly to the threat. He chased John down a road and pulled out a .25 automatic. He got off two shots before the gun jammed, and before John knew it, he’d shot back.

John wouldn’t find out for sure until he was in his cell that the man was dead, but he had felt the life leave his brother-in-law the second he shot him.

It was in the Sunflower County Jail where John found God. As he sat there in a cold cell, a cellmate told him to turn his life over to the Lord.

John’s life had been far from charmed. Plagued by drugs and alcohol, he now found himself sharing a fate suffered by all too many poor black men in the Delta. But on one of those sleepless nights, John prayed, and that’s when he says he felt it.

“It was like a warm oil being poured down from the top of my head, running slowly down my body, and every place it touched it was cleansing me.”

It was when John got out of jail that he says “old Jimmy Lear” took a chance on him, made him his "oxygen man," always telling John not to worry and “keep moving.”

John would drive around to each pond and put a long stick into the water and check the oxygen levels. The job required him to check the oxygen nearly every hour around the clock, so sleeping was in short spurts spread throughout the day and night.

It was during one of these naps 15 years ago that John had a strange dream. In the dream, Tony, the oldest of his four sons, had crashed his truck, and John was consoling him. John awoke to the phone ringing. It was his wife Mary Frances. Tony had fallen asleep at the wheel coming home from work at 4 a.m.

“God called him home.”

Crawling into the choir stand

Despite being told he’d never be able to walk, Lucas has found his own way, slipping out of his wheelchair and onto the floor at Trinity House of Prayer, where he shuffles around on thick knee pads as if in a state of constant reverence.

Drawn to the music, it was only a matter of time before Lucas crawled up into the choir stand. Not only was Lucas the only white member of the church - and definitely the only member with cerebral palsy - until last year he was also the only man in the all women’s choir. A young man has since joined him.

Trinity’s pastor, Willie B. Knighten, tried to heal Lucas at one of his first services. Lucas says it was the only time he felt uncomfortable at the church.

“I only felt funny when the preacher laid hands on me the first time,” he remembers.

It’s the soft spot within many people that makes them wish Lucas normal, but the hand of God hasn’t taken away his condition.

Still, to nearly everyone who attends Trinity, it’s a small miracle each time Lucas crawls into the choir stand on his own every week to sing. In a small way, he has been healed.

Lucas is a lot like any 25-year-old single man. He likes cars, he loves surfing the web, and the No. 1 thing on his mind at any given time is women. He wants a girlfriend - specifically one, he says, who is “an outgoing sweetheart, who does not smoke, has never had children but wants (them) and is a Republican.”

Lucas’ access to the outside world is a bit limited. Because of his handicap, going anywhere can be an ordeal. He refuses to use a power chair, instead relying on the push of a friend, relative or stranger.

A few days each week, Lucas works at his father’s restaurant in nearby Indianola washing dishes and cleaning. When Lucas was 6 years old, his parents got divorced. It’s no secret that the difficulties of raising an impaired child strained the marriage.

The job gets him out of the house he shares with his mother, something that’s important for a young man whose body is disabled but whose ambition knows no limits. Lucas wants to start his own cleaning company, and during the announcements following a recent service at Trinity House of Prayer, Lucas asks for the microphone, holds it up to his machine and slowly types out the message that if anyone is looking for work, he’s hiring.

Church is the one time a week Lucas knows he can get out of the house, and at Trinity House of Prayer people won’t look away when he comes down the aisle.

“Lucas would be at church every time the door opened if he could,” his mother says. “But we just usually go take him on Sunday. And that's the most important part of the week for Lucas … getting to church on Sunday.”

Lucas has found other ways to connect. He has an e-mail address and a Facebook account, but for years his favorite hobby has been jumping on the CB radio he keeps in the family room. Most of the truckers know him by now. His handle is “Teddy Bear,” and he starts each interaction the same way: “Is there a pot of coffee on?”

John Woods, now Bishop John Woods, has moved on from Trinity to be the associate pastor of a church down the road. He and Lucas still get together, singing their favorite gospel songs just as they did 15 years ago. Lucas’ favorites are “I’ll Fly Away” and “I’ve Got To Run.” Between songs they talk about life and the Lord.

When John asks Lucas if he’s been saved, he shrugs. Despite the music and the love of Trinity’s congregants, he hasn’t quite made his peace with God. It’s a familiar struggle for many, but when you draw a hand like Lucas’, making sense of it all can be even more challenging.

Lucas may still be on a search for God, but the boy who was born without a breath has found his “oxygen man” - and John has found the son he lost.

When they speak of God, John tells Lucas, “Don’t worry, you’ll find him one day.” But Lucas seems content to find his solace “in the music,” and he’s happy as long as he can convince folks of one thing: “I want people to know I am more than a boy in a wheelchair.”

Editor's Note: Nashville band Sleeping Bulls provided the song “Jean Baptiste” from their upcoming album “The Least Banquets” for the video.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • Faith & Health • Mississippi

soundoff (1,300 Responses)
  1. yuppers

    Atheism is a belief too folks, sorry but it is.

    And no the unicorn/santa comparison is not a legitimate defense for non belief.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
    • Laughing

      You're an idiot. I have yet to see any atheist argue that atheism is not a belief. It's not a RELIGION nor is it a belief SYSTEM, but sure, it's a belief, which proves nothing. All the unicorn/leprechaun analogies? Yeah, those are for the ridiculousness of religion champ.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
    • William Demuth

      The desire to drag the rational in overwhelms Christians.

      By saying we believe in something comporble, they hope they look less idiotic.

      They don't

      July 20, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
    • Q

      Atheism is a position of non-belief founded in an absence of empirical evidence for the proposition that a deity exists. Bald is not a hair color, abstinence is not an intercourse position, and Atheism is not a belief.

      Why are theists so desperate to apply this tu quoque fallacy? Perhaps they recognize the inherent weakness of purely faith-based claims? Perhaps they simply lack the ability to understand the distinction between belief and non-belief? Perhaps they simply cannot fathom a mind which is not dependent on magic and by necessity must project this position on non-believers?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
    • Bible Clown

      One more time, A-Gnostic means I don't claim to have absolute knowledge of the truth. A-Theism means I do claim absolute knowledge. Since I can't search the universe and be sure God doesn't exist, I can't claim that knowledge as absolute. My disbelief is based on faith that science is true, that gravity is real, that I see by photon reflection and nourish my body via my Krebs cycle of enzymes, etc, etc. so I am actually an Atheist. But I can't back it up, so Agnostic will do. Define your terms first, THEN debate!

      July 20, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • Q

      @yuppers – You declare by fiat that unicorns, etc comparisons are not legitimate reasons for non-belief? I offer they are precisely the proper comparison as would be Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, etc. Perhaps you'd care to share precisely why they fail? How is belief in an invisible magical being who brings presents any different than belief in an invisible magical being who will reward or punish you after you die?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • albert

      That is true, Atheism is a belief. I find it interesting that humans have an inherent instinct to believe in or worship something. Whether it be religion, idols, other humans, science, Atheism, etc. Yes, very interesting.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
    • Laughing

      @ Q

      It upsets the religious that we have all these ways to make fun of their idiotic belief systems but when they try and show us that you have to have faith or belief in the big bang that it sometimes rationalizes and verfies their own belief's. I still fail to see any validation to christianity when you can prove that an atheist's belief in the big bang theory is somehow just as irrational, but hey, let'em have that feeling of accomplishment.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
    • Q

      @Bible Clown – You are incorrect. Agnostic = "without knowledge"; Atheism = "without theism". Atheism is a position statement reflecting the strength of available evidence in favor of the existence of deities. It is not a declaration of absolute knowledge as atheists readily concede absolute knowledge cannot be possessed. That some atheists inappropriately conflate the atheist label with a form of knowledge is actually irrelevant to the simple etymology and meaning of the word.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
    • albert

      If one does not believe in God, and is an Atheist, they how can that not be a belief. Although not an Atheist myself, I can certainly see why a person would be. Many "so-called" Christians are far removed from the Bible and go as far as spreading lies as truth. Christmas and Easter for example are based on Pagan customs. The teaching of eternal torment in Hell for "sinning" is also not taught in the Bible. Unfortunately some decide to give up on God and the Bible.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
    • Q

      "That is true, Atheism is a belief. I find it interesting that humans have an inherent instinct to believe in or worship something. Whether it be religion, idols, other humans, science, Atheism, etc. Yes, very interesting."

      Case in point of the need to erroneously project faith-based belief onto everyone, even when the behavior is not present. How transparently desperate some theists are in their need to validate their magical thinking. It's an internal argumentum ad populum fallacy...

      July 20, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @yuppers

      You said: "Atheism is a belief too folks, sorry but it is."

      Yep, it is the belief that gods and the supernatural don't exist. It is a single belief.

      This belief is not based on faith, as is theists' belief(s). It is based on there being no evidence for and lots of evidence against there being a god.

      This "ism" in atheism does not imply a religion like Catholicism. In this instance, "ism" means a quality or state of being, like absenteeism.

      Cheers!

      July 20, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
    • Q

      "If one does not believe in God, and is an Atheist, they how can that not be a belief." Well, you say it right there in "...not believe". How can "not believing" be "believing'? If you claim there is an invisible leprechaun living in my ear telling me what to do and I reject the claim, is this rejection in and of itself a belief? No. Nor would my statement that you cannot provide evidence to support the leprechaun/ear theory be a belief, rather, it would be a simple factual statement.

      P.S. The bible is a rather ridiculous and morally abhorrent collection of stories. One need only actually read it to see this, though you are correct in that seeing how so many Christians behave and readily dismiss reason and compassion for blind obedience purely out the fear of their own mortality certainly does serve to further dissuade those of us on the outside.

      July 20, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • fred

      Q,
      Don't you ever sleep? This great battle you play out 24 hours a day against an imaginary diety makes me think thow dust protest to much. You are not Alonso Quixano by any chance?

      July 20, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • Q

      @fred – I pop in from time to time to laugh at the irrational and logically flawed arguments offered by theists like yourself. It's entertaining...like watching those reality TV "Police Chase" shows where the fleeing suspects always end up crashing...

      July 20, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • fred

      Q,
      Close your eyes and tell me if you can sense a difference between the fictional Santa and fictional Zeus.

      July 20, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • Q

      @fred – Add to your two: Yahweh, Allah, Brahman, Xenu, Moroni, etc, etc and my answer is still, "No, no difference. They are all imaginary beings used alternatively as threats of punishments or promises ofl rewards to control human behavior."

      To spare you the effort, your Yahweh is again, no different. All of the arguments you've provided thus far amount to logical fallacies and special pleading in the failed attempt to elevate your mythology above the others. I understand you "feel" your deity is the right one and you honestly believe the arguments you've been making are sound, but you need to understand your "feelings" are less than worthless as evidence and your arguments are absent any actual substance with respect to the validity of the claims you make.

      July 20, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
  2. Chris in WI

    When are we going to wake up and realize that the religions are based on teaching from a time when the world was flat. Where the sun went around the earth. When air was a notion that nobody understood (let alone atmospheric pressure etc).

    They thought that the gods lived in the clouds. The tower of babel story talked about building a tower to reach the heavens and god had to intervene? Really that's not a clue that the story is not true. I personally have flown over the clouds and I can assure you that nobody is living on top of these masses of dust and water vapor.

    Back then nobody knew better, and society needed to be taught how to be good to one another in order to live in a civil manor.

    It's 2011 however and we KNOW that magic is not true, and people do not rise from the dead (I know I know jesus was a miracle, but what about lazarus?) Most of the stories in the christian books were stolen from other older stories. Jesus is almost a carbon copy of Horus who predates Jesus by 2500(ish) years. Written down that long before him!!

    Both born to virgins, only son of god, of royal decent, births announced by angels and a star, birth witnessed by shepherds, 3 deities/wise men visit, tried to be killed during infancy, god tells mother to flee in both, baptism at 30, baptizer beheaded, called the way the truth the light, killed and raised from the dead and witnessed by a women, I mean seriously??

    When are people going to stop assuming that what mommy, daddy, and the priest told them is true and start thinking for themselves. Religion is ripping apart our entire world. End the mass delusion already!~

    July 20, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
    • Bruce

      You reminded me, Chris, of the discomfort the whole Lazarus story gives to me. I mean, something as important to Christianity as the idea of bodily resurrection is treated almost flippantly in that passage. Lazarus rises from the dead, still in the same body and the same clothes, stinking like a decaying corpse no less!

      And later in Acts where we learn of Tabitha rising from the dead at Peter's hands... I mean, it kinda takes the edge off of the whole Jesus story, doncha think? Jesus wasn't the first to rise, nor was he the last. It's like it's no big thing...

      July 20, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
    • albert

      You are not basing your thought s on what the Bible teaches, but rather on Pagan customs and Greek mythology. The Bible for example has said all along that the world is round (Isaiah 40:22). The Bible does not say "3 Wise men". You are unfair in not doing your research. I agree that those who profess to be Christians and spread these lies are to blame.

      But the same can be said about Science. Science claims that "Mathematically", it is possible for their to be life on other planets, and they go as far as saying that there IS live on other planets. Yet their is ZERO proof of life on other planets. And even without proof, ther are people that believe this is truth.

      July 20, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
  3. William Demuth

    I bet he gets buggered.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • Bible Clown

      You got that on your mind today, don't you?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Yeah BC

      I have been bashing the Philly apologists all day, then I see this article
      What am I supposed to think? Either they molest him, or they cook him and eat him

      July 20, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  4. Nookster

    Theres enough delusional people praising him. I think I'll just try to believe in myself.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  5. I = rubber, U = glue

    I guess I'm misinterpreting your posts. I read your posts as "He has joined a demonic church, engaging in demonic acts." But you can get all upset at how I interpret your words. Kind of like how you are getting upset at these people for how they interpret Christianity from an ambiguous book.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  6. albert

    OK, Bruce. I'm calling your bluff as well. My guess is that you celebrate Christmas and Easter. Both holidays that have there origins in Pagan customs and Greek mythology. So please show me if you are truly a Christian, where Jesus taught his followers to practice Pagan customs and Greek mythology. Show me Santa Clause in the Bible. Show me the Easter Bunny. Again, I refer you to Matt. 7:21-23

    July 20, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
    • William Demuth

      I celebrate Cinco De Mayo and I am Irish

      Does that mean I go to limbo?

      I celebrate Bastille Day, so if I go to Hell, it will be in France.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
    • albert

      LOL, that was good. The Bible actually doesn't teach about Eternal torment in a fiery Hell. So no worries.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • Bruce

      I'm an atheist, albert, but even I can see that Matthew 7:21-23 refers to YOU and not to the people of the church featured in the main article (and I'm using Matthew 7:2-5 against you because apparently you felt comfortable skipping that part).

      As far as scriptural evidence that supports using pagan theology as a tool to lead people to Christianity I present Paul's treatment of the "unknown god" in Acts 17:16-34.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • albert

      Once again you are misquoting the Bible. He spoke of their altar “To an Unknown God” and established common ground by saying that this was the God he proposed to discuss. Paul reached his listeners by using concepts they could accept. The Stoics could agree with him that God is the Source of human life, that all men belong to the same race, that God is not far off from us, and that human life is dependent on God. Paul supported this last point by citing works of the Stoic poets Aratus (Phaenomena) and Cleanthes (Hymn to Zeus). The Epicureans too would find that they had much in common with Paul—God is alive and can be known. He is self-sufficient, requires nothing from men, and does not dwell in handmade temples.
      Paul’s listeners were familiar with the terms he used. Indeed, according to one source, “the world (kosmos),” “progeny,” and “the Divine Being” were all expressions often used by Greek philosophers. (Acts 17:24-29) Not that Paul was willing to compromise the truth to win them over. On the contrary, his concluding remarks about resurrection and judgment clashed with their beliefs. Even so, he deftly adapted his message, in form and substance, to appeal to his philosophically-minded audience.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
    • Bruce

      And, albert, if you research into WHY the Roman Catholic Church adapted pagan holidays such as Easter and Christmas into celebrations of the Christ, you will find this passage from Acts cited, and your reasoning used: "he deftly adapted his message, in form and substance, to appeal to his philosophically-minded audience."

      Except in this case the RCC was deftly adapting their message, in form and substance, to a different kind of audience.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • Bible Clown

      "Show me Santa Clause in the Bible." There's no sanity clause in the Bible! And the Estrus Bunny is the same as the March Hare, I think.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • Ancient Marinator

      My favorite holiday is St. Elmo's Fire Drill. I celebrate by pulling fire alarm handles. St. Vitus' Dance Party is pretty cool, too.

      July 20, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
    • albert

      Bruce, do you really expect us to put our faith in a church that allows its priest to molest children. The entire Catholic church is based on tradition. From there hierarchy to there celebrations. They follow the Pope and not the teachings of Jesus. You do realize that they bow down and pray to idols of saints, and the virgin Mary right? That is all about the Catholic church. NOT the Bible.

      July 20, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
    • Bruce

      @albert: On what planet, in what alternate reality, does it make sense for an atheist like myself to ask a hyp0cr1te like yourself to place his faith in the Roman Catholic Church?

      You are intellectually dishonest, albert. Take the plank of wood from your own eye first, then you can see better to help your brother with the speck of dust in his eye.

      July 21, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
  7. Bruce

    LOL @ "how dare you" 😛

    July 20, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  8. acts 431

    The Q'ran (the holy book of the Muslim faith) plainly states, "It is IMPOSSIBLE for Allah to have a son because that is against his nature." On the other hand, throughout the Bible (the holy book of the Christian faith), Jesus Christ is called "the Son of God". Further, the Bible records in Matthew 3 that God says , "This is my beloved SON, in whom I am well pleased."
    Please don't try to blend your Muslim beliefs with Christianity! They are incompatible.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
  9. albert

    I = rubber, U = glue, Also, I am not saying that this young precious human being is demonized. How dare you even insinuate such a thing.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  10. albert

    I = rubber, U = glue, I call your bluff. Show us from the scriptures your point. Yeah, didnt think so.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  11. Bruce

    No, YOU are misquoting the scriptures, albert. Jesus was obviously talking about YOU in Matthew 7.

    You are the voice of demons. You believe God exists, and you shudder. James foretold of your kind!

    July 20, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  12. I = rubber, U = glue

    And why does God allow these demons to influence this handicapped boy. Or does Free Will = Demons.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
  13. I = rubber, U = glue

    Kind of sounds like the mom in "Waterboy" That handicapped boy is the Devil! That church is the Devil! Anything i disagree with is the Devil!

    July 20, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  14. albert

    You are misquoting the scriptures. Jesus was not acting this way as part of a sermon as a way to teach people. I was speaking specifically to his way of teaching. Plus, if you read the Bible, you would clearly know that speaking in tongues, healing, etc., were done away with once the apostles died. There is no longer a purpose for it. So where does it come from? Demons.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  15. Bruce

    Except for that part about the money changers in the temple, and the fig tree, and the pigs...

    Cultural insensitivity is culturally insensitive.

    Seriously, dude. Let these people be. Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's demonic.

    July 20, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  16. A Blessed Mother

    Wow...this article/video really blessed me, thanks for posting! Sometimes in life we become so consumed with gaining/loosing material possessions and disregard our major blessings (the ability to speak, walk, and so on). I pray God will continue to bless him and perform a MIGHTY miracle. I know God is able to do exceedingly and abundantly all we can ever ask or think. God healed my baby daughter after being on life support. Thanks again CNN for this inspirational story!

    July 20, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • think for yourself

      I am happy for your baby daughter. Did you happen to thank the doctors and nurses that took care of her? You know, the ones that actually did the saving?

      July 20, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
    • William Demuth

      My son was on life support as well, but he was healed by the Incredible Hulk and Justin Bieber!

      Aren't ridiculous idols helpfull!

      July 20, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
    • Ancient Marinator

      Unless God Himself came down and did the 'lay on hands' thing, it was probably mostly the hospital. Feel free to thank God that they were there and did a good job!

      July 20, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  17. Lycidas

    Hmmm, I better step bck and ask..do you mean Artist's statements? Because you might be correct then 😉

    July 20, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
  18. CFW

    Praise God! Thank you for posting this beautiful story, Mr. Andres.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • albert

      Please read Matt. 7:21-23

      July 20, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • A Blessed Mother

      Yes, I agree! It was such a blessing!

      July 20, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
  19. Lycidas

    "Actually, there's quite a bit wrong here. There's willful ignorance, superiority, haughtiness, idiocy and maybe a mental handicap."

    1. willful ignorance- No, this person seems to understand the basics of her faith quite well
    2. superiority- No, in no way does she make herself out to be the reason of her worth
    3. haughtiness- No, she seems not snobbish about her faith but quite confident in it
    4. idiocy- No, again..she seems to understand her faith quite well and shows no lack of knowledge on other topics from her statements
    5. netal handicap- At least you said maybe but the answer would still be toward the no. There is nothing in her statements that shows such a condition. Unless you think belief is a main criteria of being mentally handicapped. That would be a faulty notion considering we all have beliefs of some sorts.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
  20. JT

    The person is clearly suffering from a mental illness.

    July 20, 2011 at 3:54 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.