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Andrew Boza

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Andrew Boza


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praying
Fri, Jul 17, 2015 - 02:02 PM

What do you say to friends asking for prayers during a crisis?

I have a friend who happens to be a Christian minister who's wife recently underwent risky surgery. During the surgery, he posted to Facebook asking his friends to pray that God would comfort her and that the doctors would be wise. I really felt for him in this moment because I knew he must've been dreadfully worried, but I didn't know what to say to let him know that I felt for him. He knows I'm an atheist, so I could not use a white lie and tell him I was praying for him, but I was worried that any other response would be interpretted as "I don't believe that God is a real thing, and this exercise of well wishing will have no effect on the surgery, but good luck!" I just didn't know what to say. Have any of you encountered similar situations? How did you handle it?



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Mark Warkentin

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Mark Warkentin


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Print Sun, Jul 19, 2015 - 09:25 AM
I say I wish her well and ask if there is anything I can do for HIM or his family (I cannot help her as I am not a surgeon). I ignore any request for prayer, I do not address that issue at all, as if it was not even asked. But I make sure he knows I will support the family in any way he needs. I make it personal and offer what I can do, not calling upon any spiritual help. A time of stress is not the time to challenge or query another's belief system. As a Humanist, I want to help others and support them in their time of suffering or grief.


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KO
KO

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KO

KO

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Print Fri, Jul 24, 2015 - 10:46 AM
I have said in similar situations that my thoughts are with you, which was "liked".

However, if it's a specific request for prayers and you're an atheist then the request is not really for *you* but for the person's praying friends on facebook. So, in that case, not responding and instead sending an actual card, a PM or an email is a much better idea.


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Bill Ellis

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Bill Ellis


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Print Sat, Jul 18, 2015 - 08:55 AM
I tell them our best thoughts are with them...


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Amy E Hall
Living in the wilds

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Amy E Hall

Living in the wilds

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A freethinker, a world traveler, a pilot, and an artist.
Print Sat, Jul 18, 2015 - 05:26 PM
If we are talking Social media: I use {{{{ HUGGS }}} Its a genuine sentiment and has always been appreciated.


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Sue Parry

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Sue Parry


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Print Sat, Jul 18, 2015 - 07:47 PM
I really hope everything goes well. Is there anything concrete I can do to help?


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Neil Stahl

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Neil Stahl


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Print Sun, Jul 19, 2015 - 08:51 AM
I also would say they have our best wishes or we hope everything turns out well and leave it at that. And hugs should be of help.


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Chris Dunn

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Chris Dunn


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Print Mon, Jul 20, 2015 - 12:49 PM
substitute 'thoughts', 'caring', 'support', or 'wishes'--in many cases, it's best to not respond at all. Like walking in on a chat between wives, sometimes it's best to keep walking.


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Bill Haines
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Bill Haines

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"Love well, seek the good in all things, harm no others, think for yourself, take responsibility, respect nature, do your utmost, be informed, be kind, be courageous: at least, sincerely try."
-- A. C. Grayling
Print Tue, Nov 15, 2016 - 04:37 PM
"Wishing you (or whomever) brilliant medics and speedy recovery -- let me know if there's anything at all I can do to help get you through this."


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