Local/State

Church rallies around Delaware Co. girl in need of transplant

Monday, June 03, 2013

A local church is rallying around 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan. The young cystic fibrosis patient is in desperate need for a pair of lungs and her parents' battle to save her life remains in the national spotlight.

In the meantime, her parish of 3,000 is appealing to a higher power.

"She's getting the full nine yards from our services," said Glenn Porter.

In Wayne, Murnaghan's case is dominating the gospel at St. David's Episcopal Church.

"Jesus, who we follow, was great for breaking the rules when they needed to be broken for healing," said Father Sandy McCurdy.

The rules Father McCurdy is talking about are those of the Organ Procurement Transplant Network.

Murnaghan is on the adult waiting list. However, under U.S. transplant guidelines, a lung from an adult donor would first be offered to adults in the region.

Doctors say Murnaghan might only have weeks left.

Following pleas from her family, Secretary Kathleen Sebelius wrote a letter Friday to the Organ Procurement Transplant Network, asking for a review of the way organs are allocated.

The Murnaghan's feel that more could have been done.

"We're very disappointed, she's decided not to take any immediate action right now and essentially left Sarah to die," said Fran Murnaghan, Sarah's father.

The review Secretary Sebelius requested could take months.

Meanwhile, the clergy from Murnaghan's church remain at her bedside.

"We've been with them all these 18 months they've been on the waiting list, praying for them, trying to support them anyway they can," said Reverend Hillary Raining.

In another effort, St. David's Episcopal Church plans to hold a vigil for the young girl and her family on Friday.

They will also be making donation cards available. If signed, the card will allow someone to donate their lungs specifically to Murnaghan.

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Tags:
philadelphia, children, delaware county, local/state, annie mccormick
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