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Holding on to the Cross

by Michael Ford last modified 11 Jun, 2019 06:30 PM

An olive-wood holding cross from Bethlehem was the constant companion for a Dorset churchgoer who has undergone pioneering medical procedures.

Alison Cameron, from Dorset, was 17 when a routine operation to take out her appendix left her in constant pain from nerve damage.

Over the next 30 years, Alison had more than 50 injections, known as cryoblocks, to freeze the site of her abdominal pain, but none of them stopped the pain for more than six months.

Now 56, last December Alison underwent another last ditch operation to place paddle-shaped electrodes across small bundles of nerves in her spinal column and, in answer to her and her congregation's prayers, within 5 weeks she was pain-free.

Alison, a member of the PCC at St Thomas’ Church Ensbury Park, has sung in the choir and worship band as much as she was able throughout all her many operations, and told the Revd Simon Evans, Vicar of Ensbury Park that the holding cross was with her throughout.

Simon said:

"I brought the Cross back for her from Bethlehem on one of my trips to the Holy Land, she had it in her hand for every procedure, she even obtained the agreement of the hospital to have the cross taped to her hand each time so it wouldn’t be dropped.

"She told me that she was aware on one occasion, that when she came round from the anaesthetic, it was on the different hand, the team had obviously had to take it off but honoured her request and put it on the other hand.

"It is wonderful to see prayer answered and to see Alison looking and feeling so well now, there were times of great darkness for her and our prayers were even more earnest, but she is a very determined lady and has a strong faith and a very loving and supportive family. She is without doubt full of life now and throwing herself back into family and church life with vigour!

"Alison attends Church with her service dog Hendricks, who is also seen as a regular member of our congregation too!"

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