Friday, September 20, 2013

Mystery priest revisited

Remember the mysterious and possibly angelic priest, who turned out to be a mundane human? He's visiting the victim of that car crash, who turns twenty today. The young woman suffered fifteen broken bones and a lacerated liver and spleen, so it really is remarkable, and worthy of much glad celebration, that she survived to see her twentieth birthday.

But rather than credit the many, many people who strove to get her out of the smashed car and who worked to save her at the hospital, her family "credits two occurrences for her survival: Katie's plea for first responders and witnesses to 'pray out loud' as she lay with her head on the pavement and the arrival of a mystery priest, later identified as Rev. Patrick Dowling, who anointed her with oil and prayed at her side." Her mother says, "We are so thankful for the simple message our Katie spoke from the very beginning -- for everyone around her to pray out loud. That message went around the world, and was propelled by the mystery priest we now know as Father Dowling, who just happened upon the accident and he offered his prayers." She adds, "There are so many reasons she should have perished. When you see the pictures from the crash, you say to yourself, 'God is good.'"

Sigh. I know that religion often helps get people through dire circumstances such as these. And it was decent and kind of Father Dowling to get to the victim and pray with her, given that she wanted and needed his prayers. I don't doubt his support helped buoy the victim in her hour of need. But when it's all over, I wish people would give a little more credit where credit is due-- to the ordinary humans who race to help injured people, and those at hospitals who work so hard to help put battered and broken bodies back together-- rather than giving all the credit to God.

1 comment:

  1. It would be nice, but then they would be admitting that their God is not as powerful as the like to believe.