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Addiction healed, lives redeemed

From the February 24, 2003 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

This week's focus on breaking free of addiction has special meaning for me. That's because my father's healing of alcoholism, chain smoking, and a medically incurable stomach condition, changed the course of his life—and that of our whole family—well over half a century ago.

It was Christian Science that healed my dad. His parents had taken him to a Christian Science Sunday School for a couple of years when he was small. One of their neighbors in Louisville, Kentucky, had been healed of tuberculosis by reading Mary Baker Eddy's book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, and they wanted to find out about it. But after a while, my dad's family stopped going.

Over the years, however, my dad never really forgot what he had learned about God's love in that Sunday School. His teacher, Mrs. Caspari, drove one point home indelibly: There will never be any situation, no matter how bad, where God—and Christian Science—can't help you. And heal you.

Thirty-some years later, on the brink of suicide over his addictions and the news that he had just a few weeks to live, my dad suddenly remembered that Sunday School teacher's words. He immediately drove several hundred miles back to Louisville, and looked up Mrs. Caspari. She was now a Christian Science practitioner.

After he poured out his life story, he asked her point blank,

"Do you think Christian Science can heal me?"

Her answer was direct and confident. "Son, you are healed," she said. And he was.

My father was always unspeakably thankful for that moment. And for Mrs. Caspari's intrepid spiritual vision, which penetrated right through his wasted exterior to the pure reality of his being—instantly healing him of his ailments and dependencies. He spent the rest of his life helping other people break free of all sorts of difficulties, through the power of prayer.

You'll read in this week's Sentinel about how prayer halted several types of addiction—including a hard-core drug habit. And, most important, how the men and women healed were, like my dad, forever changed.

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