On Palm Sunday, one year ago, my wife Jenna went into early labor and began hemorrhaging. She almost died. Our twin sons, Ezra and Leo, were born late that night, too little and too weak to survive. They died. I never made it to church that Sunday. But I want to share with you the sermon I would have preached that morning. It’s a sermon about a hospital room, about facing pain and death, and when I wrote it, I had no idea that I would spend that very day in a hospital room, facing pain and death. In the quiet of my grief, I returned to this sermon and found God speaking to me—in words I never knew were intended for me.
I share them with you now.
Read More “A Good Death” – A Palm Sunday Sermon
To “choose” a child through adoption is a daunting and impossible task. Can we “choose” Down’s Syndrome, for example? And is that different than when biology dictates your choice?
Journey with us as we face these seemingly impossible choices faced in adoption…
Read More The Impossibility of “Choosing” a Child
Where is God when we have no strength left?
Read this powerful sermon of strength and hope that Patrick shared with his congregation during a special service on the longest night of the year, a service that recognizes that even at Christmas many were experiencing loss, darkness, and doubt. Along with Patrick, find the miracle of one more breath. One more step.
Read More A Sermon for Strength
What do we do with unanswered prayers? Patrick wrestles with this question in his latest sermon. Why did God not save Ezra and Leo as we cried out to God to save them?
Yet, maybe our prayers have been answered in an unexpected way, as Patrick shares how, through one powerful interaction with a prisoner at a maximum security prison, God opened our eyes to a new path to parenthood – adoption.
Read More Answering Unanswered Prayers
As we enter Advent, the season of waiting for the Christ child, Presbyterian Outlook is sharing the stories of parents who bear the grief of infertility, pregnancy loss and infant loss. As a part of this series, Presbyterian Outlook graciously asked Patrick to write a reflection on stillbirth from a father’s perspective. Read this, as well as the stories of other parents who have endured the pain of grief, in this remarkable series.
Read More See me: A father’s perspective on stillbirth
This Advent, as Jenna and I remember the children we lost and dare dream of the Child to come, we are excited to announce that our own manger may one day be full. We have started the adoption process!
Read More An Advent Announcement: We’re Adopting!
“A Pastoral Response to Charlottesville” – Our children will light our way through this eclipse
A letter to the congregation of Westminster Presbyterian Church, Auburn, NY,
Read More A Pastoral Response to Charlottesville
from Rev. Patrick David Heery
You are parents without children and there are children in the world without parents; problem solved.
This is one of the most daunting questions that someone who is enduring infertility faces.
Adoption is beautiful. As the sister of a birth mother, I know this more intimately than most. However, adoption is also complicated and it is not a cure. There is no JUST about adoption.
Read More “Why don’t you just adopt?”
Too often, fathers and families are forgotten victims in the aftermath of stillbirth.
In this post, I honor the grief of these forgotten fathers and families – of Patrick, our parents, our sisters, and their husbands – and I share four simple, magical words that can help you to remember their pain and their love too.
Read More Forgotten Fathers and Families
While we were holding our sons in the hospital, before saying our final goodbyes, Patrick read a poem by Ralph Waldo Emerson to them, entitled “Threnody.” Emerson wrote this poem after his own son died.
This poem serves as a centerpiece in the final sermon of a 4-part sermon series that Patrick preached on Abraham’s near-sacrifice of his son, Isaac.
Read More “All is Riddle”