"Cercetați toate lucrurile, si păstrați ce este bun!"

Apostolul Pavel

When my mom hears bad news from anywhere, she always poses the same question: “How much longer will God endure this miserable world?” And the older I get, the more bad news I stumble upon. I’m sure that is no news to anyone who opens a newspaper, turns on the T.V. , or simply lives in this world. Personally I have many questions for God, but I believe He has already answered this one. There is a story in the Bible of Abraham pleading with God for Sodom and Gomorrah. God wants to destroy these places when Abraham asks him a very important question, “Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked?” he asks and pleads with God until He says, “For the sake of ten {righteous people] I will not destroy it.” The story has a tragic end when these “righteous” people are not to be found. (Genesis 18). Our story has not ended yet, which can only mean one thing.

I met Matia Simion about a month ago. A boy of three, then, with pleading eyes and an endearing smile, in spite of his deformity, with a big fear of needles. I can still hear him plead with his mom, “Mommy, they won’t poke me with the needle today, will they” as we drove to the hospital for his surgery. You see, Matia was born with a form of mouth cancer which by the time it was detected, his tumor had grown as big as his head and his cancer rapidly spreading. I’m not here to talk about his mother’s desperate search for someone to treat him in the hospitals of Romania or about the doctors reassuring her that it is just his tooth coming out when she first noticed something strange in her infant’s mouth. Neither do I want to focus on the inhumanity she experienced, or the fight she gave to save her child’s life. Matia is not the first to be failed by the Romanian medical system and how many mothers did not put up just as much fight for their child to no avail? I can’t answer the question of why God permits certain things, or why He chooses to save some and not others, but I can tell you that God found some righteous people in this world.

Marilena Simion, Matia’s mother was at the end of herself when the doctors in Romania told her there is nothing they can do for her beloved third child. When she had run out of her own resources, a pastor by the name of Nelu Maiora proposed that she solicit help from those overseas. She did not know anyone in America nor did she have the kind of money it would take to bring Matia in the Promised Land. Yet, this same pastor happened to have the contact information of a man by the name of Adrian Petrisor whose brother happened to be studying to become an oral surgeon. When Adrian read Matia’s story, he was moved and simply asked his brother, Dr. Daniel Petrisor, to take a look and possibly give some advice at least. Daniel in turn took the story to a much respected professor of his who in turn said, “Let’s fix this kid.”

That was over three years ago. What followed was the conglomeration of some righteous people who were willing to lend a helping hand. There was the man who received the email and was moved, Adrian Petrisor, who invested time, money, and offered up his home to bring the little one and his mother to the States. There was Dr. Daniel Petrisor who gave his time and his hard earned skills to change Matia’s life. There was the professor in Louisiana who did the same along with the hospital there. There was another doctor in Romania who offered as much help as he could with his limited resources along with another one in Hungry. There was St. Vincent Hospital in Portland with doctors and nurses who took care of Matia as if he was their own. There was a small Romanian church in Beaverton who offered up some funds and helping hands and many other people who contributed to making Matia better. Some did more than others, but all had one thing in common, the desire to help with the knowledge that it is in God’s will to love our neighbor.

Today Matia has a new face. Dr. Daniel Petrisor and a team of skilled doctors performed a very successful facial reconstruction surgery on Wednesday August 21, 2013, one day after his 4th birthday, at St Vincent Hospital all pro-bono. Matia can talk and eat and is healing at a miraculous pace. Just the other day Dr. Petrisor mentioned how stunned the team of doctors are at his speedy recovery and how it is hard to explain it all medically.

I did not focus on the story itself or on the many people who contributed to Matia’s new face specifically. I did not mention any one person or institution more than the other because this story is not about Matia or his mom or the people who helped. This story is about God finding ten righteous people and what is righteousness if not loving your neighbor, doing good to those in need, and standing up for the weak. So next time you want to save the world, do something for someone in need, think about being righteous and take example from those who understand this principal. Next time you wonder why there is so much misery in this world, ameliorate it by doing good and adding to the number of righteous people so that God in his infinite mercy can look down and say, “I will spare the whole place for their sake.”