Follow Me: A Lifetime Journey

In Today’s Gospel reading (John 21: 1-19) we encounter Jesus standing by a charcoal fire on the shore of the Sea of Tiberias, waiting for Peter and the other disciples. Jesus invites Peter to come to Him at the place they first met.  He invites Peter to renew his life, find his identity within Jesus and then move forward and follow Him.

Jesus also invites us on a lifetime journey through our own struggles and triumphs.  We are continually given opportunities to encounter the Lord in our daily lives, find Him dwelling within us, and have the strength to truly follow Him in our lives.  Today, I share with you a beautiful story of faith, love, and courage in the life-changing journey of Carol Glock.  Through her battle with cancer, Carol encountered Jesus, learned more about herself, and is continuing to follow Him.

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Miracle Breast Cancer Cure Inspires Survivor to start her own Nonprofit

 Carol Glock, a breast cancer survivor from Pittsburgh Pennsylvania knows how taxing the journey to recovery can be for a family. “On June 6, 2013, I was diagnosed with Inflammatory Breast Cancer.  I was told that I had a 20% chance to survive,” said Glock.

“My tumor started as an eight-by-seven centimeter mass in my left breast. I was shocked.  There is no breast cancer in my family history and I was receiving periodic mammograms.  However, inflammatory breast cancer progresses rapidly, often in a matter of weeks or months.  When you are diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer it’s typically at stage 3 or 4.”

Dr. Thomas Julian, a surgical oncologist and breast cancer specialist at Allegheny General Hospital (AGH), part of the Pittsburgh-based Allegheny Health Network, informed Glock about a clinical trial underway at the hospital of an investigational drug for inflammatory breast cancer, called Neratinib, that targets and blocks proteins that help cancer cells to grow. Once accepted and enrolled in the study, the results of the treatment were almost immediate for Glock.   On July 17, 2013, she was informed the tumor in her breast was nearly gone!!

“The doctors told me that inflammatory cancer grows fast but it also responds fast to treatment.   By August 28, 2013, my ultrasound did not show a mass in my breast.   My response to the treatment was very rapid and very good,” she said. After receiving chemotherapy, radiation and having a mastectomy, Glock was declared cancer free.

“I have a 90 % survival rate for 5 years and 80% after that.  I realize that because of the nature of my cancer it could come back again, but I plan to remain vigilant and put my trust in the excellent team of doctors that took care of me,” she said.

“I attribute a lot of recovery to my faith, hope and spiritual prayer life.  Prayers were requested from friends and relatives throughout the United States and Spain. Also, my parents had a plaque with my name placed in the St. Perigrine Garden (patron saint of cancer) in Boynton Beach, Florida.  Glock said her family’s incredible support made all the difference in her battle with cancer.

“My son, Justin, chose to live at home just so he could watch over me and help my husband.  My youngest son, Jonathan, made himself available for oncology appointments and was with my husband during my long surgery. My oldest son, Jason, also was wonderful throughout the entire difficult time,” she said. “My cancer treatment was excellent but key to my recovery was the prayer, love and support of my family and friends,” Glock said. 

“Due to the miracle of my cancer recovery,” Glock was driven to start her own nonprofit to educate and raise funds about breast cancer awareness and to encourage other breast cancer survivors to consider participating in a clinical trial.  For more information go to www.glockfoundation.org 

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