By Anne Marie Amacher
The Catholic Messenger
DAVENPORT — Prayers for a Pennsylvania teenager who sustained a spinal cord injury in a wrestling tournament earlier this year are being sought across the United States.
Father Rich Adam, pastor of Sacred Heart Cathedral in Davenport, received a letter requesting prayers from Samantha Ferrick, a seventh-grader at St. Gregory Parish School in North East, Penn. In the letter she wrote about student Ian Malesiewski, a junior at Cathedral Preparatory in Erie, Penn. “Ian suffered a traumatic spinal injury in the beginning of June. He is now furthering his recovery.” She noted that he returned to school Nov. 7 part-time. The other part of the day includes rehabilitation.
“He has gained some movement in his arms and hands. I would appreciate if you could say a prayer for him. I am trying to get a card from one priest in every state to present to Ian so he would have 50 prayers from 50 states. I selected you and your parish to represent the Catholic Church of Iowa. I ask kindly that you say a prayer for Ian as he recovers.”
Fr. Adam said he was touched to be the one priest from Iowa selected. “I’m not only sending my own letter but asking the parish to support Ian in writing as many letters as we can. I’m thinking how cool it would be to share the letter and ask the whole diocese to write. It’s the power of prayer and the inspiration of Samantha Ferrick at St. Gregory School to put together a project of faith. It reminds me of the Miracle on 34th Street when the bags and bags of letters came in for Santa.”
Fr. Adam sent a letter of prayer to Ian, promising to keep him in his prayers and to “beseech the whole ‘Communion of Saints’ along with the communion of Sacred Heart Cathedral on his behalf…. I also told him what a fortunate and lucky guy he was to have such a good friend as Samantha to put faith in the power of prayers and seek such power from the priests of the nation. We wish him the best!”
Cards can be mailed to Ian at: St. Gregory School, Attn: Prayers for Ian, 140West Main St., North East, PA, 16428.