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pray_hands.GIF (680 bytes) Prayer & Spirituality
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Where Did the Brain Tumor Go?
The Story of a Miraculous Healing

By Mathew Samuel, Austin, TX

I heard the following incident from HG (Bishop) Thomas Mar Makarios while the bishop was speaking to the youth in Austin, Texas Church last weekend (April 3, 2004). There may be some errors in the message, since I am writing from memory. One purpose of me writing this message is to point out that physical healing does happen in our church (Indian Orthodox Church), though we do not publicize it as much as some other Christian Brethren.

Thomas Achen (an Indian word for Rev Father) was organizing an international conference in New Delhi, India sometime in the 1950s. Many important delegates from the WCC (World Council of Churches) were present.

One day Thomas Achen felt that one side of his face had become numb. He felt weak, and ill. His eyelids were drooping. He had double vision. He was examined by a doctor from Christian Medical College Hospital, Vellore (South India). The doctor was concerned and asked for some reports. The medical reports confirmed that Thomas Achen had a brain tumor.

The doctor called achen and told him that he was diagnosed to have brain tumor. He showed achen the reports and showed him exactly where the tumor was. He told achen,"You can come to Vellore and undergo an operation. But I need to tell you the risks involved -

1) You may die on the operating table 2) You may become disabled 3) If you do not undergo the operation, you may have another 6 months at the most to live.

Now you choose what you want to do. If you choose to have the operation, contact me in Vellore and we will have it all set up."

It was a very difficult choice for Thomas Achen. He finally made up his mind to go and have the operation and take the risk. At about this time, an American couple who were delegates at the conference and who were pleased by the service of Thomas Achen at the conference, offered him a scholarship to come and study in the United States. Thomas achen said he was interested in the offer; and made plans to go to Vellore for the treatment.

Thomas Achen went to his home in Airoor in Kerala (South India), and made his parents aware of his situation - that he had a brain tumor, and that he was planning to have an operation in Vellore, that there was a big chance that he may not come back from Vellore alive. He told them, that in that situation, they should bury him in Vellore, and not bother to bring his body back to his hometown, to save the expenses.

He met the then Bava (Head Bishop of Indian Orthodox Church) and told him of his situation - that soon Bava might have to find a replacement for him in Delhi. Bava prayed for him, then told him - "Go into the chapel and tell God your situation. If He wants your service here, you will not die, and if He wants you with Him there, you will go away from us". So Thomas Achen went into the chapel and prayed.

He took the train to Vellore, and met the priest at Vellore. He told the achen there about his situation and prepared a place for his burial there in Vellore. The next day, he got up, he did not feel any of the symptoms he felt earlier, like the drooping eyelids, numbness, double vision etc. Achen remembered an old saying that when you are closer to death, every thing suddenly feels calm and normal! He was terrified and he hurried to the hospital where he had already made an appointment. The nurse came to examine him. She looked at him and asked -"Where are the drooping eyelids?" "Do you feel numb in the face?" "Do you see double?" Achen could only reply "No!" to all her queries.

The perplexed nurse ran out and came back with the doctor who examined him in Delhi. After examinations, the doctor asked"Where is your brain tumor?" "I don't know" replied Thomas Achen!

For two months, the doctors did several tests on Achen. Then one day, 18 of the doctors in Vellore, came into his room. The doctor who examined him in Delhi said, "There are some things which the Medical Profession does not understand..This is one of those things..I saw the brain tumor in your head in Delhi..Now I dont see it!"

Later Thomas Achen contacted the American couple and took the scholarship and came to the States. He believes that it was the prayers of many people that healed him from his brain tumor.

The Thomas Achen was later ordained as a Bishop of Indian orthodox Church. He is now known as H.G. Thomas Mar Makarios, Metropolitan. He is the first Metropolitan of the American Diocese of the Indian Orthodox Church.

Quotes of Bishop Makarios:

"The church needs to change - Just like the 4th century church was not exactly a carbon copy of the 1st Century church, so also the 21st Century church cannot be an exact carbon copy of the 1st century church or the 20th century church. Change is not a threat. Change is Growth and growth is change. The church needs to continuously adapt to the new society."

"Love others, your church 'inspite of' them, not 'because of' somethings in them. You should not love anyone 'because of' something, but rather you should love 'inspite of' everything, that is true love."

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