Good morning. My name is Rosemary Campbell. My husband, Dennis, and I have been members of St Clare parish since moving to the Eastside 37 years ago. We raised 4 children here, and so far, we have 5 grandchildren.
I am a “cradle Catholic” and the product of 20 years of Catholic education. I thought I always KNEW Jesus, as I had a good role model in my mother, a widow with 6 young children, who often said it was her Catholic faith that got her through life’s difficult struggles, and she sure had her share of them. However, life had a way of showing ME that I knew ABOUT Jesus, but I didn’t really KNOW him.
A few months ago, on February 3rd, I happened to mention to Fr Andrew after Mass, that the day’s gospel reading of Mark 5 was very special to me because I had LIVED that gospel reading.
So, of course, Fr. asked me to tell my “resurrection story”. At the time I was very hesitate , and then a few weeks ago, I was asked again. At a recent Christ Life presentation, it was said that we all have a story, each different and our own, because each of us are loved by God and he is always working to save us.
My resurrection story reveals how I know that Jesus lives!
This story took place many yeas ago when our eldest daughter, Anne Marie was 9 years old and was diagnosed with leukemia. That diagnosis turned our world upside down and , needless to say, it was a very stressful time in our life, especially since at that time, the prognosis was not good. We eventually settled into a routine of weekly hospital visits and chemotherapy and LOTS OF PRAYERS. But then a year and a half into her treatments, she came down with a life-threatening form of pneumonia. Day by day, we watched her health decline and even her doctor was not very hopeful, and said as much, as I think he was trying to prepare us for the worst outcome. After about a week of bedside vigils, I went home one night to sleep. I was so scared and never felt so alone. I walked into the dark house, and in my fearful state, I didn’t even feel like turning on a light. So I just sat in the dark, numb, not knowing what else to do. Eventually, I went upstairs to the bedroom and then turned on the light. Sitting on the bed, I noticed the Bible on the bedside table. In desperation, I picked it up and it fell open to Mark 5:35 as Jesus walked into the synagogue official’s house and said “BE NOT AFRAID; JUST HAVE FAITH” and then of the official’s daughter “she is not dead but asleep”.
At that moment, my heart pounded with hope and in the quiet of my house, I cried out loud “GOD, YOU DID IT FOR THIS LITTLE GIRL, YOU CAN DO IT FOR MINE” ——-and HE DID!
Oh, it wasn’t as dramatic as in the gospel story, as she didn’t get up immediately. She had a long and difficult recovery period with many ups and downs, but she did recover and as even her doctor had said: it was a MIRACLE!
During that time in my life I had wept and prayed so hard and at times felt so alone when I didn’t FEEL Jesus near. I now know that he was always there and as the Footprint prayer says, “ it was at that time that Jesus was carrying me”. God was JUST WAITING to talk to me and I’m so grateful I opened the Bible at that moment to HEAR him speak to me and answer our prayers. I just needed to let him in and TRUST him.
Over the years, friends have asked me how I made it through that time in my life and I always answer them the same way : With the GRACE of Good!
God has been good to us. He gifted us with our daughter twice: at birth and at that illness. We are so blessed. I KNOW THAT JESUS LIVES! And I find him at the most unexpected times and places. I just need to open the door and let Him in. My faith journey is ongoing and the key for me is to get to KNOW him more and more and to bring as many other people along with me on this journey.
By the way, our daughter is doing very well and today works as a bone marrow transplant nurse and coordinator at Karmanos and she has been an inspiration to so many people she encounters.
GOD CLEARLY HAD HIS PLAN