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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Face to face

Youth bring a touch of compassion

A usually cheery Molly Wheeler, 17, felt miserable: Her grandmother had just been diagnosed with leukemia. "Why me?" she wondered. "Why my grandmother?" Wheeler went to a close friend for consolation, but something unexpected happened. Minutes into the conversation Wheeler was doing the consoling.

The friend revealed that leukemia had caused her mother's death several years earlier. Wheeler took the cue: "I could tell that she really needed to talk about her mother because she had never really opened up and talked about her."

Wheeler remembers the evening because she responded more skillfully than she might have months earlier. In helping her friend deal with her pain, Wheeler used tools she learned in peer ministry training at St. Matthew Lutheran Church, Medina, Ohio.


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December issue

DECEMBER issue:

Advent: Waiting together

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