View Full Version : Students use power of prayer for coma victim

09-16-2004, 08:08 PM
Just thought you guys would be interested.. this is from Eastern Illinios University.

On Aug. 7, Maggie Sprague was walking through the mall with the children she baby-sits when she collapsed and had a sudden heart attack.

Five minutes later, paramedics from St. Joseph's Medical Center in Bloomington arrived.

Maggie, an Eastern junior English major and member of the Alpha Phi sorority, remains at St. Joseph's and has been in a coma for the past five weeks.

Maggie's brother, Mike Sprague, a senior speech communication major at Eastern, said his sister's condition was a surprise to family members and doctors.

"Maggie had a virus infection in her heart that could happen to anyone," Mike said. "It could have been caused by a common cold that Maggie had five or even six years ago."

Because of her virus infection, Maggie had been seeing doctors for seven months prior to her heart attack. The doctors never really knew what was wrong, her brother said.

"She was always tired and feeling sick," Mike said.

The doctor's visits amounted only to flu, mono or cold diagnoses.

"Now that we know what is really wrong, we're just waiting for her to wake up," he said.

Though Maggie is not here in person with her friends, she is in their hearts and prayers.

"The women of Alpha Phi came to the Newman Catholic Center and asked for help," said Roy Lanham, campus minister at Newman. Lanham offered the chapel space and organized a weekly prayer service for Maggie's recovery. Tonight marks the third week of Wednesday services.

"Maggie is strong enough; I know she can do it," said Alicia Wroblewski, president of Alpha Phi.

Wroblewski, along with Katie Vogel, another friend of Maggie's, helped organize the Wednesday evening prayer services, which have gotten positive reactions from Maggie's family, friends and students all over campus.

"The prayer service was very powerful," said Jennifer Reinhert, a sophomore biology major. "I didn't know her, but if something happened to one of my friends, I'd appreciate students supporting them."

She said the support shown for Maggie was amazing at last week's prayer service.

"The turn out was kind of surprising for me," Reinhert said. "I had no idea there would be that many people there."

Wroblewski appreciates everyone who has been attending the prayer services and praying for a fellow friend and student.

Maggie was on the Alpha Phi executive board last year, and she was appointed to be the new member educator this year for Alpha Phi's new pledge class.

"She is the little social butterfly," Wroblewski said. "All of her friends have been very supportive of her, and her family never leaves her side"

Lanham and Wroblewski invite anyone on campus to come and pray.

"Those who know Maggie or have friends that know her are the first to come, but anyone is welcome," Lanham said. "The Sprague family is grateful for all the folks coming out to pray and show support."

Mike Sprague sees his sister's improvement and hopes that keeping her in prayer will help even more.

"She is taking such good steps," he said. "She is, for the most part, off the life support system, and her heart is completely healed now.

"Ninety nine percent of the time, Maggie can open her eyes and move her arms if you ask her to," Mike Sprague added.

The most recent movement Maggie made was a smile induced by something funny her father said.

Prayer services are held 9 p.m. every Wednesday in the Newman Catholic Center and are informal.

"We (the Sprague family) very much appreciate everyone's prayers, and we are praying for them," Mike Sprague said.

09-16-2004, 11:32 PM
Thanks farns for letting us know.

This hits close to home, as someone who grew up in Illinois and is very familiar with the state school system. :( Prayers to Maggie, her family, and our sisters at EIU.