Tragic proof prayer is useless

For those of you deluded enough to think religion is the greatest thing in the world, and faith, prayer and well wishing has any real effect on the natural world, allow me to point you in the direction of science. If you’re sick, you need science. If you’re hurt, injured, or have an infection, you need science. Hell, if you want something as simple as clean drinking water and the ability to have it on tap, you need science!

Most of us don’t even think about the number of times our lives have been saved by advances in scientific understanding. Most of it is invisible and automatic; from inoculations to ward off deadly diseases (smallpox and polio, anyone?), to antibiotics to help get rid of otherwise deadly infections; the fact that life expectancy has jumped from 40 to 75 is entirely because of the steady march forward of the most powerful and progressive contribution to our understanding of the natural world: science.

Still, plenty of morons aren’t convinced it does anything. These people actively choose to reject it, fearful of its powerful influence on society. They prefer the comfort and certainty of religion, even though they enjoy the benefits of a greater quality and longevity of life due to it. Here is yet another tragic example of parental ignorance based entirely on religious belief. Brent and Raylene Worthington believe in ‘Christian Science’, a fancy way of saying they reject modern science in favor of prayer. When their 18 month old baby contracted pneumonia and had an infection in her blood, they chose not to call a doctor and instead try to use their religion to cure her. For months while she was horribly ill they refused to seek medical help, and predictably, little Ava didn’t make it. Of course, they did have the intelligence to immediately call a lawyer after her death, so we’ll presume although they are ignorant of the power of science, they certainly are aware of the power of the law.

Now this tragedy wasn’t a quick death. The details are pretty gruesome, including the fact that a lump had started growing on her neck for months, and probably impaired her breathing. Both parents insist they were raising their children according to their Christian beliefs, and we are supposed to be sympathetic that they don’t believe in medical treatment, enough to acquit them of child neglect and manslaughter, presumably.

Saving little Ava would have been as simple as draining the cyst and giving her a few doses of antibiotics to cure her blood infection. Instead, we have a dead little girl and her two idiot parents to punish. Their inaction led directly to her death, and the treatments available that could have saved her life would have taken less than an hour to complete. That, my friends, is the power of science. While they prayed for months with no effect, a simple visit to the doctor’s would have saved her life.

What a fucking waste.

Comments (14)

  • avatar


    As much as I disagree with the method. These parents should be sterilised if they can’t muster up the basic instinct to protect their child. An instinct found not only in most human beings but also throughout the animal kingdom. Fucking insanity of the highest order. Pricks like this almost caused the death of my daughter when she contracted whooping cough before she could be innoculated against it due to some fucknut refusing the jab for their child and thus allowing it to be passed on. Anti-MMR, anti-injection, anti-bloods. Anti-fucking-intelligence more like.

    Nothing but a walking waste of flesh.

  • avatar


    And the Darwin Award goes to…

  • avatar


    I hope the Worthingtons have a long, long, long time behind bars to think about the stupidity of this entire situation.

  • avatar

    Lost Boy

    # LB Says:
    July 2nd, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    I hope the Worthingtons have a long, long, long time behind bars to think about the stupidity of this entire situation.

    Yes, to go along with the lifetime of sorrow, pain and guilt that they will suffer from – regardless of jail time – knowing that they themselves killed their own daughter.

    Religion is a disease. Science and rational thought together are the cure.

  • avatar


    Given the fact they were so ready to Lawyer-up, this sounds a lot more like a very late-term abortion than anything else.

  • avatar


    @Nada: Not to go all Godwin’s law here but do you realize who you sound like? Sterilizing undesirables? Fucking hell.

  • avatar


    Lost Boy,

    it sounds like the mother might be regretful but I’m willing to bet the father feels no remorse for what happened. He’s sad that his child is gone for sure, but it sounds like he feels he’s blameless. He did everything he should and he feels no guilt. Probably thinks it’s all part of Gods plan.

    What passages in the bible say you can’t use medical science? I’m curious.

  • avatar


    “knowing that they themselves killed their own daughter”

    the sad thing is that they probably do not believe it was their fault, so they will not feel guilty for the terrible thing they have done.

  • avatar


    The baby’s death truly is a tragedy and her parents deserve to be punished. What you say about science is true, it has been very beneficial to mankind, and there’s nothing in the Bible that prohibits us from taking advantage of it. In fact, that is the very reason God created it. Now…before you roll your eyes, take this into account. Where do most medicines come from…herbs, plants, fungi. What materials are used to make medical supplies…wood, plastics (trees, plants) metal (ores)…all natural things found on the earth. The Bible says God created the earth and everything in it. He provided us with everything we needed to survive, thrive and progress. He gave certain people the talent and capablity to become medical doctors, scientists, etc.. How…by giving us intelligence and the ability to learn. He also gave us free will. That couple chose not to seek medical attention for their baby and unfortunately she died. Very, very sad. That doesn’t mean that prayer is any less powerful. If I pray for money, it doesn’t mean that God will make it fall from the sky. He will give me a job so that I can earn it. If I pray for good health, I must do my part and eat smartly, exercise and have regular medical check-ups. Prayer isn’t laying back and watching God do everything for us. It signifies the need to talk to our heavenly father and our dependence on him. I will pray for all of you on this forum in hopes that you may one day open up your hearts to Jesus Christ. God bless you.

  • avatar

    Sasha Tullius

    Fascinating Write-up…I had to look at it a number of times,as i had various views on the matter,and it would be useful to see what others thing on the area of interest

  • avatar


    MANOFGOD: Pray you’ll figure out how to smell what you’re shoveling. “The Bible says God created the earth and everything in it.” The bible also says there are talking snakes and donkeys, 900+ year old people, giants and even dares suggest that the Earth is flat. HIS Earth — you know, the one he ‘made.’ Oops.

    A prayer and a couple aspirin cure a headache. Funny, but it works just as well minus the prayer.

    “He will give me a job…” Really? Anything to back that up at all? Blind assertions are for those without any supporting argument. First, demonstrate that there is a god, then, if you get past that hurdle, explain why he would give a good shit whether you have a job or not while he seems pretty well unconcerned about the thousands of children that starve to death daily.

    Unfortunately, I hold no hope that you may one day open up your mind and realize how foolish it is to believe in the mythology of religions/gods.

  • avatar

    Kashif Ansari

    while i agree that science has a function in today’s society there are some things which lie outside its field. that’s where everything else including religion comes in. how does your science treat a tumor that just refuses to go away. try some faith my friend. have that cancer-ridden patient pay a visit to lourdes or perform the hajj and his cancer just might go into remission. don’t get me wrong. i am not saying that science can’t help or even perform miracles. it definitely can. but there is much in religion and mysticism and art and history as well as psychology and philosophy that is of worth. they cannot be ignored in the present day chaotic times we are going thru. how will your psychiatry that is based on putting innocent people on drugs fare if it were put on trial. it ruins lives that is what it does. better to go to a spiritual person and have an exorcism done rather than undergo lobotomy or electroconvulsive therapy. man treats man worse than religion treats man. when you have the insecure dog eat dog world of freud darwin and marx rigidly and dogmatically forming secular systems that won’t last a single second on the time scale i feel sorry for where humanity is headed. what does a derrida’s deconstruction give man that pure and simple religion doesn’t. all atheists and agnostics are criticizing scumbags who can’t see past the end of their nose which grows longer than pinnochio. you blame the fundamentalists but take a look at yourself in the mirror for a change and then you will realize that you are as much guilty of determinism and reductionism. you have the same irrationality as religion. so who are you to judge. why not let God be the judge instead of the united nations or america or even the taliban or stupid terrrorists. God is enough and we don’t need any mullahs or priests explaining to us how we should pray or perform certain rituals. we need greater tolerance, love, justice and caring behavior. for that is what matters and not success, progress that is prostitution and aggression and a cruel culture that breeds parasites and extreme consumerism. i would rather live in a poor and kind society than a rich society that has people killing you each say by hurting your feelings. .

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