UPDATE on Fr. Christensen (ALS) and Seven Sisters Apostolate – Good news!

Elsewhere I asked about your good news.  This news, however, deserves its own post.

Awhile back I suggested that some of you could join the Seven Sisters Apostolate to pray for Fr. Dana Christensen, a young priest suffering with ALS (“Lou Gehrig’s disease”).

The Seven Sisters in a nutshell: 7 women and perhaps a couple alternates, commit for 1 year to 1 hour of prayer for 1 priest each week.   Hence, there is a lady on Monday, one on Tuesday, etc., ideally in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament.

Since I posted a call for a Seven Sisters for Fr. Christensen, I received this:

There are 21 intercessors for the good Father!
We will cover him with Holy Hours morning, noon and night…
3 holy hours each day!

The Anchoress wants to make contact with Fr Christensen –
and let him know the good news! The first Hour was offered last Sunday – and
less than one week later – we have three Holy Hours each day! All glory to God!

I’ve helped to get them all connected, and so my work here is done… for the time being.

This means that Father has THREE Holy Hours a DAY being raised up to God.

Some time back, Fr. Christensen wrote this:

I am personally at peace with this, although I have my moments.  I am convinced that this is a mysterious gift from God through the hands of Our Lady of Fatima to bring me to salvation and entrust me with the mission to live my priesthood in a new way.  The way of the cross that Jesus is inviting me to walk will not be easy, but He and His holy Mother Mary will uphold me.  I continue to do my best to surrender myself to Jesus knowing that He will take care of everything.

I ask all of you to pray for a miraculous healing through the intercession of Venerable Fulton J. Sheen using the following prayer.

Eternal Father, You alone grant us every blessing in Heaven and on earth, through the redemptive mission of Your Divine Son, Jesus Christ, and by the working of the Holy Spirit. If it be according to Your Will, glorify Your servant, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, by granting the favor I now request through his prayerful intercession (mention your request here – [the swift, complete and lasting healing of Fr. Christensen’s ALS]).  I make this prayer confidently through Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen.

That was some time ago.  His condition is much worse now.  I believe he writes email with eye movement and he has to have 24/7 care.

Dear readers, Fr. Christensen has asked that you pray for miraculous healing through the intercession of Fulton Sheen.

What inevitably happens next is that people, well-meaning of course, then post comments like: “I’ll pray for you especially to St. Ugthred and St. Wilibrod, my favorite saints.”  To which I respond, “Thanks!  But would you please pray to Fulton Sheen, like Fr. C asked?”  And then get back, “Okay! And St. Joan the Astonishing, too!”   Which brings the next volley: “Please just ask Fulton Sheen?”  Which results in, “Okay, and Jesus and Mary and all the Saints!”

At which point I pound my head against the desk.

For a miracle to be useful for a cause, there must be a way to substantiate that prayers for intercession were raised that THAT PARTICULAR Venerable or Blessed.   If the cause hears that virtually everyone is being evoked, it becomes less likely that the miracle will be helpful for the cause.

Get it?

Fulton Sheen.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Kerry says:

    The Fair Penelope and I expect to visit Fr. Christensen in about 8 days. I shall post after we return.

  2. Mariana2 says:

    On it, since you first told us about Father, and as per instruction (Fulton Sheen only).

  3. Antonia D says:

    Truly wonderful news about the Seven Sisters Apostolate; that’s a terrific ministry.

    I’ll pray for Fr. Christensen through the intercession of the inimitable Abp. Fulton Sheen. What a spectacular miracle this will be, God willing!

    May God bless the apostolate, Fr. Christensen, Abp. Sheen, and you (plus all your readers), Fr. Z! Thanks for *all* you do for us.

  4. Chad the Great says:

    My mother was diagnosed with Small Cell Lung Cancer, and has gone through chemo and radiation. I have been praying hard for a while.
    I always include my mother in my prayers.
    I read this post earlier today. I prayed to Venerable Fulton Sheen for the first time in my life, for Father Christensen, at Father’s direction. It was a very brief prayer.
    I do not remember if I added my mother at the end, or not.

    I got a text a few hours ago, and she told me her doctor told her she was now cancer-free.

    I don’t know if I mentioned her in my prayer today, and I’m guessing the doctor noticed her cancer being gone a few days ago, but while I don’t know if it’s a “miracle” or not, I am overwhelmed, and will be requesting the intercession of Blessed Fulton Sheen from now on.

    I have an indescribable amount of joy and gratitude for God, the Blessed Virgin, Venerable Fulton Sheen, and the other saints. I am also very thankful to father for sharing his pastoral guidance online; it is invaluable.

  5. revjotwp says:

    My mother went on to her eternal rest this past May from ALS. She followed Fr. Christensen’s blog, ALS: A Living Sacrifice, and followed his example of offering up her disease for others. He helped her feel less alone. She had a calendar that she filled in every day with with someone’s name or family and she would offer up her suffering/blessings for that person or persons. At her funeral, our priest said he loved going to visit her because he went there to minister to her and instead she ministered to him. My family was privileged to be able to take care of her every day and to be there when she left here. She taught us the beauty of suffering for others, as Jesus did, as Fr. Christensen is doing. We will pray for him, he helped us out more than he will ever know. I guess I should be sending this to him.

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