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From the Britain’s The Daily Mail comes another story of a “miraculous” recovery by a patient who was declared brain dead by the attending doctors.  Of course, organ donation has a starring role.

They were told there was no chance of their son surviving after he suffered devastating injuries in a car crash.

But Steven Thorpe’s parents refused to give up hope – despite four specialists declaring that the 17-year-old was brain dead.

Convinced they saw a ‘flicker’ of life as Steven lay in a coma, John and Janet Thorpe rejected advice to switch off his life support machine.

They begged for another opinion – and it was a decision that saved him.

A neurosurgeon found faint signs of brain activity

And of course, the link to organ donation:

‘The doctors were telling my parents that they wanted to take me off the life support. The words they used to my parents were “You need to start thinking about organ donations”.

Yes, of course the doctors wanted the family to be thinking about organ donation.  I guarantee someone of the staff at the hospital started their own thinking about organ donation within minutes of the EMT arrival of a brain injured patient.

This could be a photo of hospital organ donation administrators...or a pair of vultures.

Steven is now 21, a graduate and clerical trainee.  Despite losing use of his left arm and “extensive reconstructive surgery to his face” including having both his nose and eye socket rebuilt, Steven says he considers his survival as “a full recovery” and is very grateful that his parents were adamant to bring in another opinion.

The hospital issued a statement to The Daily Mail,

‘The injury to Steven’s brain was extremely critical and several CT scans of the head showed almost irreversible damage.

‘It is extremely rare that a patient with such extensive trauma to the brain should survive. We were delighted to see Steven recover.’

The article does not state whether the hospital told Steven’s parents, as they urged them to donate ‘dead’ Steven’s organs, that he had “almost irreversible damage.”  When a grieving family is told to start thinking about organ donation, they think their loved one is dead, not almost dead.  But time and again, stories like this show us that to an unfortunate number of medical workers, “almost dead” = “dead dead”.

Dr. Piper, the General Practitioner whose involvement saved Steven’s life notes, “I am astonished with the outcome but one worries that this may happen more often than we know.”

I’m worried too.

h/t to Lifesitenews whose own article on this story includes several references to similar recent “miraculous” recoveries.  Furthermore, they have a dozen similar articles linked at the bottom of their post.  Educate yourself and check it out.

 

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Editorial Opinion column in UK’s The Daily Mail:

These judges want to destroy our core moral values. We simply can’t let them succeed

It’s good reading.

(updated March 7, 2011)

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A new video of young Lia Mills’ speech on euthanasia.  13 years old, she is more articulate and wiser than I.

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I know I’ve been posting alot of news stories as of late.  I’m sorry about that.  But here is another gem that you may have missed, and is a good Year of the Priest story.  It’s a tale of a false accusation, leading to a conviction for rape, four years of prison for an innocent man, and finally, the truth emerges when the accuser admits that she made the whole thing up to stop her friends from beating her.  After reading the story, it sounds to me like this woman was in some sort of woman’s gang because they were slapping her around.  Years later she does the right thing, with the help of a good confessor and the prodding of DNA evidence.  The truth will set you free, and though this woman will be spending time in prison, I can’t help thinking that she feels somewhat liberated after carrying the knowledge of her guilt.  I’m praying that this goes a long way toward the salvation of this woman.

Again, keep all of those involved in your prayers, especially the unnamed priest who is the real hero of the story.  (note to self: I really need to finish my post on Reconciliation.)

From the New York Post:

A young mother who falsely cried rape, sending an innocent man to prison for nearly four years, will experience firsthand what he suffered — she’ll spend one to three years behind bars for perjury.

“I wish her the best of luck,” said William McCaffrey last night of Biurny Peguero Gonzalez.

“Jail isn’t easy.”

McCaffrey, 33, of The Bronx, was locked up after Gonzalez accused him of raping her at knifepoint on a Bronx street back in 2005.

It was a lie she repeated to doctors, cops, prosecutors, a grand jury and the jury that convicted McCaffrey.

***

Gonzalez was taken away after making a tearful apology to McCaffrey, who was not in court.

She also begged for mercy on behalf of her two sons, ages 3 months and 7 years.

“To Mr. McCaffrey, I am aware that nothing I do or say to him can bring back the years he spent in jail,” she said. “I want him to know I will carry this guilt for the rest of my life.”

Gonzalez, 27, had recanted her story last year after new DNA evidence proved she’d been lying and a priest to whom she’d confessed urged her to come clean.

God, bless your servant in the Bronx.

full story here.

UPDATE

I found another article on this story from WPIX which names the priest, the parish and specifically mentions that the accuser had returned to her faith.  The reporter, Stephanie Barash does a good job of covering this.

A woman – who accused a man of sexually attacking her more than four years ago – has confessed to her priest, that the attack never happened, police said.

Biurny Peguero Gonzalez, 26, who recently tied the knot and has a baby on the way, said she found renewed faith in the Catholic Church and couldn’t go on living with the burden of the lie.

She admitted to her priest, Rev. Zelijko Guverovic of St. Anthony’s in Union City, that she had not been raped by William McCafferey, despite what she told her friends, law enforcement officials, and even a jury.

McCafferey, who was later convicted of the crime, is currently in prison and has already completed 4 years of a 20-year sentence.Guberovic urged Gonzalez to speak with her lawyer, Paul Callen, who then brought her to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, where she reportedly recanted her testimony.

During the trial, Gonzalez told jurors she had met McCaffrey after a night of heavy drinking in September 2005. She said she had been in a car parked in front of an upper Manhattan eatery on Dyckman Street when he picked her up to go to a party. Some of her friends remained inside the restaurant when she left.

Realizing they were both too intoxicated to get behind the wheel, Gonzalez said they parked in a garage and got a ride with his friends to the party. When they realized the party was over, McCaffrey took her back to the garage. When he left, she told her friends – who were still inside the restaurant – that she had been raped.

Gonzalez said she went to Christ Hospital in Jersey City the following morning and showed nurses bite marks on her shoulder and arm, apparently from McCaffrey. The nurses, however, found no physical evidence that showed that she had been raped.

Gonzalez said she concocted the outrageous story because her friend became infuriated with her after she abandoned them without a ride from the restaurant – and said they even began physically abusing her.

According to the New York Post, the District Attorney’s office is now considering charging Gonzalez with perjury.

An attorney for McCafferey asked a judge Wednesday to vacate his conviction and to release his client.

Pray for Mr. McCaffery as he rebuilds his life, Mrs. Gonzalez who is taking the fearful road of following the Lord despite personal suffering, and the faithful servant Fr. Zelijko Guberovic.  This story highlights the importance of Reconciliation, and how God acts through his priest to enact His will. 

It’s Lent.  Go to confession.  Go tomorrow.  (for more reasons to go Confession)

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Having seen firsthand how malicious, nasty and expensive a child custody battle can be, as well as how incredibly abusively the court system is extending its authority, stories like this one in the Chicago Tribune give me pause.

Pray for this child.

Divorcing couple war over child’s religion

Dad defies court order by taking 3-year-old daughter to Catholic church

By Cynthia Dizikes and Kristen Mack, Tribune reporters

9:20 PM CST, February 16, 2010

Rebecca Reyes opened an e-mail from her estranged husband in November to learn to her shock that he had their 3-year-old daughter baptized in the Catholic Church even though she said the couple, in happier times, had agreed to raise her in the Jewish faith.

What happened over the next few months brought the couple’s private battles into the open and raises questions about how far the court system can — or should — go in dictating what faith separated parents teach their children.

After the unannounced baptism, a Cook County Circuit Court judge took the unusual step of temporarily barring Reyes’ husband, Joseph, from exposing their child to any religion other than Judaism. But Joseph Reyes then allegedly defied the order by taking his daughter to Mass at Holy Name Cathedral — with a television news crew in tow.

The wife’s lawyers blasted Joseph Reyes’ defiance and demanded he be held in criminal contempt, a charge that carries a maximum punishment of six months in jail if convicted.

A new judge brought into the case Tuesday at the father’s request said she will set a date later for a trial on the contempt allegations.

The couple married in October 2004 but split about four years later. The divorce has raged on since 2008. Rebecca Reyes complained of “extreme and repeated mental cruelty” by her husband, court records show, while he alleged that she was “emotionally abusive” and had an affair.

A psychologist who concluded that Joseph Reyes suffered from a personality disorder recommended he be monitored while visiting his daughter, but after another psychologist weighed in, the court allowed the father to care for her without supervision every other weekend and one weeknight.

Rebecca Reyes was granted full custody last month, but the divorce battle continues.

In a sworn statement in the divorce, Rebecca Reyes said her husband, raised a Catholic, had converted to Judaism after their marriage and had agreed to raise their daughter in the Jewish faith. He denies he agreed to raise her only in the Jewish faith.

Her lawyers argue that the daughter, who attends a Jewish preschool, would “suffer confusion to her emotional detriment” as a result of what they called Joseph Reyes’ “malicious” actions.

“I am upset that Joseph would take such an action so counter to (my daughter’s) Jewish religious education and upbringing without any prior discussion, consultation or notification to me,” she said in the affidavit.

Jeffery Leving, a divorce lawyer who specializes in fathers’ rights, said he would recommend that Joseph Reyes convert back to Catholicism if he wanted to expose his daughter to his faith without further incurring the judge’s wrath. He also questioned whether excluding his estranged wife from religious decisions and inviting the news media to watch him defy a judge’s order was truly “in the best interest of the child or is this a PR circus?”

“This is parental war,” Leving said. “The parents are using the child as a tool of revenge.”

Joseph Reyes, a second-year student at John Marshall Law School, said that despite the judge’s order, he decided to take his daughter to a Catholic church one Sunday after she had asked to go.

Joseph Reyes’ lawyer, Joel Brodsky, who has gained attention in recent months defending Drew Peterson in a sensational murder case, said every parent has a right to take their child to their place of worship “as long as it is not a harm to the child.”

“I cannot see how taking a child to a baptism or church could ever be a harm to a child,” he said.

While many divorce proceedings involving interfaith couples devolve into bitter feuds over religion, Emily Buss, a law professor at the University of Chicago, called the order to temporarily limit the child to Judaism “striking.”

“The idea is we change religious views — that is what religious freedom includes,” Buss said. “Even if (one) parent has more authority in the form of more custody, the other parent can (usually) … still expose the child to his or her religion even if it was not the religious practices within the family when it was intact.”

Carlton Marcyan, a senior partner with the divorce specialty firm Schiller, DuCanto & Fleck, said courts don’t normally “like to get immersed in religious issues.”

“You have a very young child here. A 3-year-old is not going to know whether she’s at a Catholic church or a synagogue,” Marcyan said.

On Tuesday, Brodsky succeeded in transferring the contempt matter to Judge Elizabeth Loredo-Rivera. Brodsky said he didn’t want Judge Edward Jordan, who had temporarily barred the couple’s daughter from attending Catholic services, ruling further on the case.

Tribune reporter Jeff Coen also contributed to this report.

cdizikes@tribune.com

kmack@tribune.com

Copyright © 2010, Chicago Tribune

// http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/ct-met-interfaith-divorce-20100216,0,2673258.story?obref=obnetwork

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This is a very sad case, and it’s an example where parents have unwittingly visited horrible things on their kids through their prior selfish, sinful decisions.  I do not know Lisa Miller but I can surmise from my own life that she is completely regretting the sins she committed which now have such a devastating impact on her precious child.  We have to continue to educate and evangelize to our young people, we have to ward off relativism which leads to these situations.   Please keep this family in your prayers. 

A woman at the center of a complex dispute with her former lesbian partner defied a court order to give up custody of her 7-year-old daughter Friday, opening the door to possible criminal charges.

A Vermont judge had ordered Lisa Miller to turn over daughter Isabella to Janet Jenkins at 1 p.m. Friday at the Falls Church, Va., home of Jenkins’ parents. Miller did not show up with the girl, according to Fairfax County, Va., police and Jenkins’ Vermont-based attorney.

“She’s very disappointed, obviously,” said Sarah Star, Jenkins’ lawyer. “She’s very concerned about Isabella and asks that if anybody sees Isabella, that they please contact the authorities.”

The Jenkins family called police after Miller failed to show. A detective interviewed the family and determined that Fairfax County authorities would not be investigating the girl’s whereabouts because of jurisdictional concerns, said Officer Tawny Wright, a police spokeswoman.

Star said she had also contacted authorities in Rutland County, Vt., where Jenkins lives, and Bedford County, Va., where Miller was living the last time Jenkins knew her whereabouts. Wright said it would be up to authorities in those counties to decide whether to investigate.

If police believe a crime has been committed, they would obtain a criminal warrant charging Miller with parental abduction. For the time being, the case remains a civil matter.

Miller and Jenkins were joined in a Vermont civil union in 2000. Isabella was born to Miller through artificial insemination in 2002. The couple broke up in 2003, and Miller moved to Virginia, renounced homosexuality and became an evangelical Christian.

When Vermont Family Court Judge William Cohen dissolved the couple’s civil union, he awarded custody to Miller but granted liberal visitation rights to Jenkins.

The supreme courts of Virginia and Vermont ruled in favor of Jenkins, saying the case was the same as a custody dispute between a heterosexual couple. The case was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which declined to hear arguments on it.

Cohen awarded custody to Jenkins on Nov. 20 after finding Miller in contempt of court for denying Jenkins access to the girl. The judge said the only way to ensure equal access to the child was to switch custody.

But Cohen also noted that it appeared Miller had stopped speaking to her attorneys and “disappeared” with the child.

Miller’s last known address is in Forest, Va. A telephone number listed for her at that address rang unanswered Friday.

Her attorney, Mathew D. Staver, the law school dean at Liberty University, did not respond to a request through an assistant for comment.

Carl Tobias, a University of Richmond law professor who has followed the case, said it was likely the Vermont judge would issue another contempt order in the wake of Friday’s developments.

 

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Erica Werner of The Associated Press wrote a surprisingly fair and balanced wire article about Nebraska Senator Bob Nelson‘s holdout on the socialized medicine health care bill. 

WASHINGTON – A moderate Democrat whose vote could be crucial said Thursday an attempted Senate compromise on abortion is unsatisfactory, raising doubts about whether the chamber can pass President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul by Christmas.

“As it is, without modifications, the language concerning abortion is not sufficient,” Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson, a key holdout on the health care bill, said in a statement after first making his concerns known to Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.

Nelson said there were positive improvements dealing with teen pregnancy and adoption, and that he was open to further negotiations. But in a radio interview earlier in the day with KLIN in Lincoln, Nebraska, Nelson also said that abortion wasn’t his only concern and he didn’t see how the Christmas deadline was achievable.

In reporting on the behind the scenes concerns over the abortion language, reporter Werner achieves a nearly balanced reportage:

The attempted abortion compromise offered to Nelson was written by another anti-abortion Democrat, Bob Casey of Pennsylvania, among others, and was an attempt to secure Nelson’s support for the health care bill while also keeping liberals on board. It’s the Democrats’ latest attempt to strictly separate public and private money that could pay for abortion coverage under a remade health care system in which many lower-income people would be using new federal subsidies to buy health insurance.

Several previous attempts have been dismissed by Roman Catholic bishops and anti-abortion groups as accounting gimmicks, and this one looks like it may fare no better. The language has not been made public but is already drawing criticism from outside groups.

Speaking to reporters, Casey declined to directly address Nelson’s objections but said he would keep trying for a compromise.

“We’re trying to get this right,” Casey said. “I’ve had ideas on the table for a while now, I’m still working through them and we’ll keep talking to anyone who wants to discuss it.”

According to Casey, the proposed compromise included a two-year increase, from $10,000 to $11,000, in an adoption tax credit; $250 million over 10 years in new funding to help pregnant teens and others with alternatives to abortion and stronger “conscience clause” language to give protections to health care providers who don’t want to perform abortions. Casey declined to go into additional detail, but according to anti-abortion groups and others briefed on the language, another element would allow individuals opposed to abortion to seek assurances that none of their premium dollars would pay for that service.

That provision, in particular, angered anti-abortion activists.

Julie Schmit-Albin, executive director of Nebraska Right to Life, said that in her understanding the new language “still allows federal subsidies for plans that cover abortion on demand, which is entirely unacceptable.”

“The proposed opt-out clause is particularly offensive,” Schmit-Albin said. “The federal government would treat abortion on demand as if it was really health care, and then allow people to apply for status as conscientious objectors? Give me a break.”

The abortion issue also threatened to derail health care legislation in the House, before Speaker Nancy Pelosi agreed to the demands of anti-abortion Democrats, who added stringent restrictions to the bill that infuriated liberals.

In the House bill, any health plan that receives any federal subsidies could not offer abortion coverage. The Senate language as filed — and apparently under the attempted compromise — would allow federal subsidies to go to health plans that offer abortion coverage but would attempt to ensure that only private money went for the procedures.

Please pray for our pro-life representatives and politicians.  They need our prays and God’s grace to strengthen them in their resolve.

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