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.
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."