The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Dear Faith

In our love for you, we give you back to God

I kissed my right index finger and touched it to the lifeless body of our baby. I had been frightened about what I’d feel at this moment. But as I looked at the child, I felt at peace.

It had been an excruciating three weeks. During a routine ultrasound, my wife, Amy, and I had learned the baby she was carrying had Trisomy 13, a chromosomal disorder. Doctors told us the baby wouldn’t survive until full term.

Should we terminate the pregnancy? Or should we allow nature to take its course? Amy and I talked, prayed, met with our pastor and read about other couples in similar situations. Our pastor explained that God would shower us with love and grace no matter what we decided.

As Amy took some time to look within herself, I reminded her of how much I loved her. And I spent time with our firstborn Katie, who was nearly 2.

Amy decided to write a letter to the baby inside her, whom we had named Faith. She told Faith how much we loved her and that out of this love we were giving her back to God.

A week later, Amy and I went to a Boston hospital to begin the induction. Our doctor checked the heartbeat: There was none. Faith had heard her mom and was already with the angels. Some 18 hours later, Amy delivered our stillborn baby.

Faith never breathed, but she made quite an impact. I felt a stronger bond with Amy and with Katie. I also felt God had been listening to us and had guided us to a place of grace.

More than a year later, Amy delivered a healthy girl named Chelsea Faith. At the top of Chelsea’s head, we noticed a light-colored birthmark that, we were told, is found on a small percentage of babies. It’s called an “angel’s kiss.”

I think God had sent us a reminder: Faith is looking out for you, Chelsea. She’s with you, your sister and parents every day—our angel of peace, grace and love who is a reminder that faith is a rich blessing.


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February issue


Embracing diversity