July 29, 2015

Answered questions and the Fulton Sheen / Alleged Miracle talk - just in case you missed the broadcast

You guys! Wow!

Thank you so much to everyone who showed up for last night's broadcast. I was happy so many were able to show up and I apologize for the bad lighting and for not always knowing what I was doing with the Google Hangout. But we made it through and all-in-all I thought it went rather well.

I also apologize because there were several questions people had submitted but I didn't see until the broadcast was done. I'll definitely be answering those in this post!

In case you missed it last night, you can watch it right here or on my YouTube channel. I spend the first two minutes doing an introduction and figuring things out, about 35 minutes doing the actual presentation, and about 15 minutes answering questions. If you watch it and have any further questions please don't hesitate to ask!

But now for all those questions I missed. There were some really good ones so I wanted to respond publicly. Here we go;

From Kendra: Bonnie, if the cause is reopened, if he is beatified, what will be James' role?
Usually at the beatification Mass the recipient of the miracle carries the first class relics and presents them to the main celebrant (sometimes the pope, usually a cardinal from the Congregation for the Causes of Saints). So James would have that role at the Mass but that would be it. We'd get nice seats for the Mass, and likely for the canonization Mass, too, which is a nice bonus.

From Kaylan: Hi Bonnie! My husband has a question - have any of the doctors ever tried to offer you any medical explanation as to how James could have gone an hour without a heartbeat and then be completely normal?
Yes, but honestly the answer is pretty lame and even other medical professionals have told me that. It usually goes something like this:
Doctor: You said sixty-one minutes, I think you mean sixty-one seconds.
Me: No, James didn't have a pulse for sixty-one minutes, over an hour.
Doctor: Well, he must have had a pulse and you just didn't know since it was a homebirth.
Me: For about forty minutes he was hooked up to a heart monitor, in the ambulance and in the ED, and that whole time he was P.E.A. on the monitor.
Doctor: Well, he must have gotten very good CPR.
Me: I didn't know a person without a pulse could receive CPR for over an hour, come back to life once all resuscitating tactics had ceased, and go on to live a normal, healthy life. Has that happened before?
Doctor: -------  No. --------  But then he must have been receiving oxygen through the umbilical cord.
Me: The medical records state that there was a "tightly tied true knot" in his umbilical cord. It cut off all his oxygen supply. It's the reason he was a stillborn.
Doctor: Well, he wasn't really a stillborn.
Me: He was a zero on the APGAR scale at 1, 5, 10, 30, and 60 minutes. I thought that's what a stillborn is.
Doctor: --------
Me: It's all in his medical records. Everything was documented.

Those are all snippets of actual conversations I've had with a handful of doctors. There always comes a point where the conversation ends because they have no more ideas but they also don't want to call it a miracle. One doctor made a list of "if/than" statements. "Well, if this happened, and then this happened, and if this was what was going on but we didn't know, than that would explain why James is healthy today." But there's so many conditions to their theory it's just ridiculous, and I've seen other medical experts reference the medical records and point out a flaw in the theory. And so the conversation usually just ends.

Our family doctor told me one day, "It's not a miracle that James is alive. It's a miracle he's doing as well as he is."

From Sheena: Question! Have you kept in contact with his doctors? I'm sure the whole situation was life-changing to some or all!
We have gone back and visited the NICU several times over the years, and due to James' severe allergies we've also been back to the emergency room more than once, so we've bumped into quite a few doctors and nurses who cared for James.

In particular, there is one NICU nurse practitioner who has since become a friend - when James was about a year old we ended up in the same Bible study. She has been wonderful at helping me understand all the medical jargon and explaining what everyone at the hospital was thinking and feeling while we were there. I don't know if it changed her life, but she is a wonderful nurse, mom, wife, and friend and I'm so happy to know her. :)

And that's it! Thank you again to everyone who watched. Oh! And if you would like to bring me in to speak at your parish, moms' group, conference, youth group, etc. please check out my speaking tab. I currently have openings for August - October and will be doing resuming local-ish speaking gigs in April 2016.


  1. Cannot wait to watch this! I really wanted to be "on" last night but just didn't work. I looked at speaker tab. Private even in fort Carson? So creepers from Denver can't come? :) I wish!!!!

  2. So glad you posted this! I tried watching live last night but due to some technical/baby sleep difficulties I only caught bits and pieces. It is such an amazing story! We're praying that Sheen's case is reopened soon!

  3. Also my husband (from herscher!) thinks maybe Lazarus would've been a good confirmation name. *I really hope that isn't offensive.*

  4. Thank you for posting the video! I can't wait to watch it!

  5. Thank you for sharing this. I've heard bits and pieces, but really appreciated the completeness of it, and hearing it from your heart. And I will be praying for you and your upcoming delivery.