Tony Rossi, Director of Communications, The Christophers                                     

The Miracle in Room 106

On September 5, 2018, 28-year-old Shannon Lapp faced death for the second time in her life.

The first was a few weeks after her birth in 1990 when she was diagnosed with a rare and fatal

liver disease. An innovative living donor transplant from her mother, Kelly Ann Hickey Lynch,

saved her at that time. But doctors weren’t sure if there was anything they could do for her a few

months ago when she developed acute liver rejection and meningitis.

Shannon had been on anti-rejection medication all her life and got her blood tested regularly to make sure her liver was working correctly. In August, her blood work showed she was enduring acute liver rejection. The wife and new mother of an adopted baby boy was admitted into the hospital for a multi-day treatment that doctors compared to chemotherapy.

Treatments were going well until 3:00 a.m. on September 5th. Shannon woke up in excruciating pain, first in her head, then her entire body. When Kelly arrived, she was shocked at how quickly Shannon was deteriorating. She began posting prayer requests on Facebook, while doctors tried to figure out what was wrong. That’s when the word “meningitis” came up. When Kelly asked doctors if Shannon was dying, they couldn’t look her in the eye. Kelly felt like she was watching her daughter endure an agony in the garden, but she relied on her Catholic faith to help her surrender to God’s will. 

At 5:30 in the afternoon, a priest named Father Ridley arrived. He had given Shannon the Anointing of the Sick the day before and wanted to check on her. She whispered to him, “I want to receive the Eucharist.” Shannon let the host dissolve on her tongue.

Within one minute, the miracle in room 106 occurred. Shannon experienced relief from her pain. She recalled, “When I asked Father Ridley to receive the Eucharist…it didn’t feel like it was a conscious decision on my end. It just came out, and I can’t explain it…I think that it came directly from God.” In addition, Shannon had a vision that standing at the four corners of her bed were three holy family friends who had passed away, along with a saint: Father Mychal Judge, Police Officer Steven McDonald, Father Cassian A. Miles, and St. Francis of Assisi. “I could see the four of them, and I just knew that I was going to be okay,” she said.

Kelly attributes Shannon’s survival to her receiving the Eucharist, as well as the prayers of others. She said, “People were on their knees in those moments. Those exact moments when this happened is when the rosary was taking place back home, and people everywhere, from all different denominations of faith, were on their knees praying for my daughter…It can’t be a coincidence.” In addition, said Kelly, “The following day, my husband asked two different doctors, one on the neuro team and one on the liver team… ‘Have you ever seen a patient develop aseptic meningitis have as quick of a turnaround as you saw my daughter have last night?’ Both doctors answered the same: ‘Never.’”

Shannon’s health has improved since that fateful day, and her liver numbers remain down. And though she never took life for granted, she says, “I hug people a little longer now. I cherish the small moments, [like] feeding my son and he was laughing at me...It has put a lot of things into perspective for me and I’m very fortunate.”

 

For free copies of the Christopher News Note EASTER BRINGS JOY, HOPE, AND NEW LIFE, write: The Christophers, 5 Hanover Square, New York, NY 10004; or e-mail: mail@christophers.org     

  

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