Like many with neurological disorders, her biggest problems came
I was on Facebook with some friends from Moline, including my best friend from comic book collecting days. The loss of a child came up, so I mentioned our daughters, adding, "You would be surprised how many people have lost a child."
My friend, who once lived two blocks away from my home, added, "I lost my son when he was only 17." Until that moment, I did not know about his loss.
Tomorrow and August 2nd mark two birthdays, the first one for Erin Joy, the second for Bethany Joan Marie. Birthdays and Christmas, Mother's Day and Father's Day, make us pause and think even more about their great love for so many people. Bethany had a nurse who was disciplined for loving her so much. Erin had a large fan club, including groupies who bought special clothes and toys for her, just because they wanted to give back to her. Erin had a mountain of toys we gave to others as they accumulated, and the best dresses any girl could want.
When a child develops a major health problem, there is not much mental energy left for coarse and ignorant people who pretend to know something. They leave an indelible bad impression on many who will never say anything. Those who lost someone early are more inclined to mark and avoid rather than be reminded of similar loutish boors from the past. One nurse said to us, "When she eats solid food she will be fine." That would cure a lot of disorders, except foot-in-the-mouth disease.
A pediatrician said, "I wanted to see if she was spoiled." He had this little experiment. I asked, "Have you read her file from the Cleveland Clinic?" I wanted to say, "Did you go to medical school?"
Long ago we decided that people that blind are not going to respond to facts, research, or common sense. The doctor in question had to be ordered by a local judge to spend time with his errant daughter. When a judge had to issue orders to a parent with a medical degree, the dysfunction is obviously at high-tide.
That is why the "conservative" pastors shock me by parading even worse behavior for thousands to observe. They are not content to ruminate privately with their drinking buddies, but proclaim what they are for everyone to see. Doubtless they learned pastoral care from the Kidnapper and Mob Organizer, C. F. W. Walther. He wrote a book on that. Everyone should buy Walther's Pastoral Care for laughs. When the children he kidnapped from his father's parsonage died in America, far from their legal guardians, did C. F. W. send a letter of condolence or just say, "They wanted to be kidnapped"?
We know how much Walther cared about the troubles he caused for Bishop Stephan's son, because Walther tricked the young man out of 80 acres of farmland bought with the bishop's own money. They were not even the son's legal right to give away.
The Syn Conference leaders today model their behavior after Walther's. I wonder if Pope John the Malefactor even paused to consider what he was doing to families whose breadwinner only had a worthless MDiv from the Little Schoolhouse on the Prairie. Did getting rid of pastors and congregations breathe new life into the ELS? Luther said in his sermon for this Sunday, "Moses wanted people pious or dead."
That is why I believe the visible church leadership is comprised of non-believers who know how to go through the motions, the same way I can join the Ohio State cheers without meaning a word.