Life, light, love among miracles
Published: March 24, 2008 | 6944th good news item since 2003
Many in the festive crowd at Sunday’s Easter sunrise service at Red Rocks Ampitheatre were harboring something special beneath their warm woolies – miracles to tell.
For years, the much-loved Colorado ritual has drawn nearly 10,000 people on Easter Sunday – weather permitting – to mark what Christians believe is among the greatest of miracles, Jesus Christ’s resurrection from the dead.
This year, the earliest Easter in nearly a century, we asked people to talk about miracles in their own lives. (Maybe their stories will resonate for future generations, who won’t see another Easter sunrise this early in the year until 2160.)
Their remarks have been edited for space and clarity.
‘That day he had angels all around him’
Jean Bush, 60, Federal Heights
I sure do have a miracle. I have a great-grandbaby, Emilio, who was 5 months old when the miracle happened.
Last October he opened a furnace grate, 6 feet deep, and fell into it. I was on my way to work when my granddaughter called to say – “Hey, we made the news.”
“Did we win the lottery?” I said. Not exactly.
Thank God the furnace wasn’t lit – even though it was October.
Then Emilio’s godfather, Hal Temple, went down to get him out, and he got stuck up to his waist. The man is 78 years old. It took five paramedics to get him out. I think that’s a miracle, too.
Anyway, firemen came and cut the baby out of the box. The little guy just had a scratch on his head. He was so adorable – he had this cinder-black face.
That day he had angels all around him. Big, big angels.
I’m telling you, miracles do happen in everyday life.
‘Having our family, that’s a gift’
Campbell Kruse, 15; his brother Spencer, 6; and his mom, Cherisse Larsson, Brighton
Campbell: I’m adopted. I think it was a miracle that God was able to bring a family my way, to find someone who will take care of me.
I was pretty young, about 4, and living in Iowa in foster care.
Cherisse: My husband, Mats, and I were able to adopt Campbell and his brother and sister. They were going to be split up. Another miracle in our lives – doctors said I couldn’t get pregnant. We tried and tried and tried. One day, after adopting these three kids, I found out I was pregnant, with Spencer.
Having our family, that’s a gift. A miracle.
‘Then all of a sudden he went into remission.’
David Hawkins, Westminster
My father-in-law had lymphoma for 10 years. He was on disability for the longest time. Then all of a sudden it went into remission. That was seven or eight years ago.
Our family sees that as a miracle. Definitely.
Chemo, radiation, going to church, praying – and never losing faith. That’s the combination. That’s what made our miracle.
‘They are each a gift from God.’
Anne Lundstrom, 41, Thornton
The gift of life is a miracle. I have four of them.
This is Amy Mae, 3.
My other kids are Catherine, 12, John, 9, and Claire, 6. Every time I have a child it truly is an absolute miracle. I’m so aware of that as I’m delivering, that they are each a gift from God.
My husband, Tom, and I met in college – he’s from here, I’m from Minneapolis. He came to Minnesota to go to school. If he hadn’t done that, I don’t know how we would have met. So that’s providential, too.
‘Last year was a mess. But God is awesome.’
Tara Miller, 23, and her mom, Ginger McLaughlin, 41
Our miracle is the fact that last year we were in the depths of despair. My dad is an alcoholic. He’s in recovery now. That has brought us all out of the darkness and into the light.
Ginger: Last year was a mess. But God is awesome.
Tara: His unfailing love shows how he always cares for us. At Easter dinner today, we can look toward the future with hope.
‘Here I am. I’m alive.’
Michael Mincinski, 44, Fort Collins
That I’m alive – that’s pretty much a miracle, I’d say.
It happened 13 years ago. I was living in L.A., and one day my girlfriend at the time and I went for a drive in the Angeles Crest National Forest.
I lost control of the car and went over a cliff, 350 feet down, the length of a football field.
We were tumbling and rolling – I remember going through the treetops. I was gripping the steering wheel with one hand and holding my girlfriend with the other and saying over and over again, ‘Oh my God, Oh my God!’
I might have said it five times or 100 times, I don’t know. Everything was in slow motion. Later they told me the car flipped 26 times.
Finally we slowed down and that’s when I saw another cliff was ahead. I prayed – “Oh please, God, let this be the last time we roll.”
They said if we had rolled three more times we would have gone over another cliff – straight down.
And you know what? Neither one of us broke a bone. It was like angels were around me the whole way.
I haven’t thought about this in a long time. But yeah, I guess that’s pretty much a miracle, isn’t it? Here I am. I’m alive.
‘They said we lost him three times.’
Tamera Berckhan, 50, and A.C. Wells, 52, St. Paul, Minn., on an emergency visit to Colorado to be with their sick son
Tamera: I guess we can say we have a miracle in the works. Two weeks ago, our 30-year-old son, Adrian, who lives here, came down with pneumococcal pneumonia. He thought it was the flu. It took him out in 12 hours. Now they’ve got him in an induced coma. He’s completely paralyzed.
They said we lost him three times; three times they revived him.
A.C.: That was a miracle. He came close to death a couple of times.
Tamera: Now the doctors say they are running out of options. His vital signs have leveled out, but they say he won’t come out of this without some permanent “war wounds.”
But this just makes us more faithful. We’ve already seen a miracle – we got him back 30 percent, with a chance to live. We just want him to live.
A.C: When you’re in a situation like this, always request prayer. It keeps you going forward.
Tamera: It gets you through the hard times.