Remember the emotional welcome back celebration for David Ritter, the Assistant Principal at Irons Junior High? We were there three years ago when the faculty and students surprised him by lining up outside that junior high an hour before school started the day he returned after a long leave to fight cancer.
David wore a pager, so that others could page him to let him know they were praying for him. He told me back then that pager was great medicine.
"I was throwing up and really sick and the pager started going off. At two in the morning. What does that tell you? that I wasn't by myself," said David Ritter.
Today, there is a non-profit organization in California that is providing pagers to patients who are looking for the healing power of prayer. Leukemia survivor Scott Francis launched the program. Like David, he believes prayer was a strong factor in his recovery.
"A group of people praying for you has a definitive effect on the outcome of your illness. So it helped me through it and I wanted to provide something along the same lines, only with a direct contact to the patient, so that's why I like the idea so much," said Scott Francis, the Prayer Pager Project founder.
"These kind of positive things do affect the body's immune system so they have an effect. So it's good for the person's spirit. I've seen that directly," said Bruce Feldstein, a chaplain.
The Prayer Pager Project is a non-profit organization that has grown from serving patients in California to providing pagers to patients with life threatening illnesses nationwide. The pagers are free. You don't call back when it beeps. It's just a page that comes for comfort.
For more information on the prayer pager project, go to www.prayerpager.com.