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A Promise Is a Promise: An Almost Unbelievable Story of a Mother's Unconditional Love and What It Can Teach Us Hardcover – August, 1996
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Top Customer Reviews
There are a number of areas, however, that I find ethically and theologically troubling. To those who are caregivers, one can be left with a sense of inadequacy or guilt because they are not up every two hours feeding or caring for someone in the same way as Kaye has. That Kaye chose to do this in the face of medical technologies and resources that could make it easier to care for Edwarda seems to be excessive and particularly puzzling. In my opinion she does not seem to me a healthy role model for caregiving especially with the need for caregivers to take care of themselves. Equally worrying is Colleen. To say, as one reviewer did above that Kaye "neglected" her may be a bit harsh, however I cannot help but think Kay's 110% devotion to Edwarda may have been a factor in Colleen's descent into addiction.
Hearing someone so convinced their loved on is going to wake up also causes me great concern. In my own experience I have seen this multiple times and I have yet to see someone wake up. I might be called a 'naysayer' for having such a pessimistic outlook, but my experience is that life or death decisions are ultimately up to God, and sometimes he chooses an outcome that is at odds with our certainty. I worry about the disillusionment people experience when God chooses to take their loved one rather then cure them. A far more healthy thing is to place the choice whether or not to cure in the hands of God and trust God will choose what is in their-and our-best interest.
The whole theology of a "Victim soul" is, at best, controversial. Yes, such things have been championed by a number of saints throughout history, most recently by St. Theresa of Lisieux and St. Faustina Kowalska, but contemporary mainstream theology has been moving away from the necessity of excessive suffering and toward a more positive outlook on the human body in the decades since Vatican II. Because the vast majority of those named victim souls are women (Padre Pio is a notable exception), feminist Theologians have expressed concern about the historical need for women to suffer in order to feel worthy of salvation.
Equally troubling is the idea of such suffering as reparation for the sinfulness of humanity. This comes dangerously close to the discredited concept of Penal Substitution theory whereby Christ's suffering had to be brutal because of the extreme depravity of humanity. Does a God who "desires mercy, not sacrifice" (cf. Mt. 9:13) really need our suffering to redeem humanity When Christ's suffering, death and resurrection already did so 2000 years ago?
A Promise is a Promise is a book some may indeed find edifying. I am struck by Kay's dedication and her selfless love and the grace she has received as a result but I find the implications and the underlying theology of what she did (she died in 2008; Edwarda in 2012-without ever waking up) too problematic to recommend it widely.
As I read some of the negative reviews (e.g. how the mother exaggerated with her devotion... Or, how it was unfair to her other daughter. How other mothers will feel guilty, since they aren't so devoted; and so forth...) I realized that most probably they didn't understand the intentions of the book. This book is not a blue print how a mother (or, anyone else) should treat a crises such as coma. Rather, this is the story about how one special person felt "called" to treat her daughter. When we read such stories it's not our place to judge, rather we should learn to be more righteous in a way that seems true and balanced to us.
One might say, I rather sleep well at night and be more available for the rest of the family throughout the day... but sometimes a persons mission in life is to do the extraordinary, that way people could be inspired to go out of their comfort zone... Perhaps God created people who exaggerate positive values, in order to awaken us.
Personally, I have issues with the concept of "suffering," but isn't it a value in Christianity (why else is there a picture in every Church of suffering on the cross)?
As to the supernatural stories of this book... i believe they are true as this book rings absolute TRUTH!!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
When the mother passed on the other daughter carried on for four more years