Pastor Associate of Rifqa Bary Announces She has been “Healed”

UPDATE: Williams has left a comment by way of clarification as to why he made the Facebook posting:

it’s because she is a minor and although the prayers of many are needed and appreciated, it is not the entire world’s business about her health condition… Jamal’s intentions are pure and sincere. I have no[t] broadcast the news of her health circumstances because I am more concerned about the numerous outsiders who have little interest in Ms Bary as a person, and more an interest in generating hits to their blog, or using her as an opportunity to be seen in the public light. With all of our governmental problems, even federal law protects indivuals from having there medical records and circumstances known to the public. Given the past 9 months Ms. Bary has endured, I believe that as a 17 year old she is also entitled to that same level of privacy…


Now, following the situation outlined in my previous post, what are we to make of this?

Brian Williams, the pastor who helped Rifqa Bary escape Ohio to Florida, has just posted the following on Jamal Jivanjee’s Facebook page – twice (quote marks in original):

“Rifqa is doing fine, she has had much prayer, but she is healed, she has been prayed for and healed. Her love for Jesus is at an all time high. COntinue to pray for her though. Jesus lives! :)”

Curiously, Williams does not mention this remarkable recovery on his own Facebook page, or give any details.

Another poster then asks Williams why his announcement seems to differ from Jivanee’s; Jivanjee’s response is ambiguous:

The beautiful thing about many, many people praying, vs only a few people praying, has to do with joy. God uses the prayers of His people to accomplish His purposes. The purpose is Joy. Jesus said in John 16 that if we ask anything in His Name, the Father will grant it so that our joy may be made full. It is the will of God that the joy of many people be made full because this brings Him glory. The more that people pray, the more the joy. This is, in my opinion, the main reason why God is raising up so many people to pray for Rifqa. May the news of her situation, and the prayers of the saints be multiplied! God is good.

Pastor Announces Rifqa Bary Seriously Ill with Cancer

The Rifqa Bary circus has taken an unexpectedly tragic twist, with an announcement on Facebook from Jamal Jivanjee, the neo-Pentecostal minister who is close to her in Ohio:

… Rifqa has been diagnosed with a very aggressive form of uterus cancer. The symptoms and health complications that are associated with this cancer materialized and are what led to its detection. Rifqa has already had 2 surgeries at this point, and she is getting ready to undergo a third surgery which will be occurring this Thursday, May 27’th

…I am writing this to you because this is not a time for silence regarding Rifqa’s life and situation. I am very thankful for many of you who have not ceased to pray and ask questions about her situation. Her situation is very serious, and she will need the help of many people in the weeks and months ahead…

Jivanjee has also given a further statements to the media. At OneNewsNow, he uses the critical illness as an excuse to villify the teenager’s parents further:

According to Jivanjee, Bary’s estranged Muslim parents were allowed to come into her hospital room.

“I don’t know if it was her attorney, her case worker, [but] somebody made the decision to bring her parents into the room to see her without her permission,” he says. “And that caused her a lot of emotional turmoil and stress, and she objected to that and they had to get them out of there.”

As has been widely reported, Bary believes that her parents want to kill for converting from Islam to Christianity (“In 150 generations in family, no one has known Jesus. I am the first; imagine the honor in killing me” – this is a garbled understanding of honour killings). At FOXNews, Jinanvee adds:

“She really wants people to pray for her… That was why the decision was made to get the news out there.”

Curious use of the passive voice there [UPDATE: see below].

Inevitably, fanning the flames is the disgusting Pamela Geller:

…Her lawyers kept her in the dark about her condition – cancer – for well over a week, while they conferred with her parents and their CAIR appointed lawyers about her treatment. While most cases like this result in a hysterectomy, she is only having the advanced malignancy removed. From what I understand, the survival rate in cases like these is 5%. Her surgery is Thursday. Pray.

Was she allowed to get a second opinion? No.

While she was lying ill, her lawyers brought her parents to her hospital bed. She was strapped in for treatment and became very agitated and upset, and they had to be removed. She has broken her silence, a silence mandated by her lawyers, that she could not talk to her friends such as Jamal Jivanjee and those of us who have been unwavering in our support for Rifqa Bary’s civil rights and religious liberty.

The parents’ wish to see their daughter is of course quite natural, but  it poses a problem for the likes of Geller, who have held up the parents as exemplars of the hateful and inverted relationship that Muslims supposedly have with their children.  Thus we are given a conspiracy theory: the parents and lawyers must be plotting to sabotage her treatment! Comments show her readers spurred on to further heights of insanity: might this be a ploy by Muslim doctors to “sexually mutilate” her? Is her cancer evidence of sex abuse? And so on. But where did Geller get her extra information from? If from Jivanee, why didn’t he reveal these details  himself? If not, then from whom?

It’s difficult to imagine what must be going through Bary’s head at the moment – she’s been told that her parents hate her and want her dead, yet they show up at her hospital expressing normal parental concern. Meanwhile, pastors like Jivanee and Lou Engle have been telling her that she has a special prophetic role to play in the world, and that God has given her supernatural powers of healing. According to Charisma:

Jivanjee said Bary believes God has a plan for her and that she will be healed. “But she felt like she needed people to be aware and praying for her,” he told Charisma.

We can’t know at this stage (and perhaps we never will know) why Bary is not having a hysterectomy, but if the choice is in her own hands might not statements such as that be affecting her judgement? In any circumstances, for a pastor to assert that a gravely-ill person will be healed when in fact their outcome is very uncertain is grossly irresponsible – abusive, even.

On Facebook, Jivanee is now being a bit more discreet. Responding to a reader’s query, he writes:

For now all I can tell you is that prayers are vital. There is much spiritual opposition.

UPDATE: Bary’s Florida lawyer is quoted by the UPI:

“The only reason she wants this to be known is she wants people to pray for her,” [John] Stemberger said.

Well, that’s certainly not Geller’s reason for her lurid posting on the subject.

Jivanjee himself has added on Facebook:

Rifqa made the decision to rally the troops for prayer regarding her situation. I know this was not an easy decision for her to make, but I know the benefits will far outweigh anything else in the long run.

UPDATE 1.5: According to Geller,

Lots of readers are forwarding me emails from Rifqa’s lawyers and shills for Stemberger, denying the facts of my reportage. I stand by my story.

Apparently Geller has been on bad terms with Stemberger since last month, when Stemberger posted the following to Facebook:

Folks I do not know how to say this more kindly but Jamal Javanjee and Pamela Geller are not trusted or accurate sources of information on Rifqa Bary and her case. They also do not represent Rifqa or her views and neither one of them are Rifqa Bary spokespersons. Rifqa is in the hands of some of the best legal counsel available.

UPDATE 2: Pastor Associate of Rifqa Bary Announces She has been “Healed” (with comments from Brian Williams)

UPDATE 3: At the anti-Islam New English Review, Jerry Gordon (“former Army Intelligence officer”) reveals that Jivanjee has been freely discussing intimate medical symptoms with him:

I spoke with Pastor Jamal Juvanjee, one of Miss Bary’s friends.  He indicated that the cancer had been detected within the past two weeks given symptoms including severe vaginal bleeding.

Gordon adds some distasteful and stupid commentary on this:

It is unclear as to what form of cancer Bary has contracted. Given that she came from a honor shame society there are several possibilities. Clearly those will have to be addressed in the context of possible investigation of childhood abuse.

Except that Bary does not come “from an honor shame society”, and not even Jivanjee has hinted at sex abuse.

(Hat tip: Right Wing Watch)