Pastor, breast cancer survivor talks about faith and healing

RICHMOND, Va. — How do you spread “The Good News” in a neighborhood where it`s more common to hear the opposite?

It takes faith.

It`s what moves members of Faith Community Baptist Church and their pastor and founder Patricia Gould- Champ.

They were passing out flyers in the Fairfield Court community inviting children to a summer Bible camp.

“Our role is to care for the people God has led to us,” said Gould-Champ. “And I believe as a pastor I am called to be an example of faith walking.”

Ten years ago, Dr. Gould-Champ faltered in her faith walk.

“It`s cancer. These are the words that can’t be taken back, .” Gould-Champ reads from her new book ‘The Gospel According to Cancer’.  It contains 60 meditations and three sermons she wrote during her breast cancer treatment about how God’s good news is revealed in tough times.

She says those words put her on a journey unlike any she had been on before. Her cross to bear? Advanced stage breast cancer.

“A faith that does not struggle is not real faith,” says Gould-Champ.

Despite having strong beliefs, Gould-Champ says that struggle included asking God – ‘why me?’ ‘why now?’

She reads another passage from her book. “God I`m not pleased with your right now.”  “I`m angry, I`m afraid. I don`t know how to be sick.”

She started journaling shortly after her diagnosis.

Each week Gould-champ leads her congregation in worship. They prayed for her healing, even when their pastor was unwilling to do so.

She reads another passage,  “There were times when I couldn`t pray. Simply didn`t want to pray,”

But slowly the lines of communication reopened and she realized she was never alone.

At a recent book signing at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Richmond, several people told her her book is an answered prayer.  One woman said her book is an inspiration.

Through her book and ministry, Gould-Champ brings hope to those who need reassurance that good news can take root and grow where and when we least expect it.

Dr. Gould Champ’s book is published by MMGI Books.  The Gospel According to Cancer is available on Amazon.com, at Faith Community Baptist Church and from the publisher.

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