A Brooklyn Irish American priest who was told he would never walk again after a painful fall has made a miraculous recovery.
After his fall on a Long Branch, New Jersey boardwalk in 2010, Murray, who was left paralyzed from the chest down, was told by doctors that he’d never walk again.
“I was stepping onto the boardwalk. The right foot went into a pothole. The left foot got caught on the lip of the boardwalk and I stumbled 4 or 5 feet,” Father John Murray told CBS.
“They said you should expect no voluntary movement,” he said. “Most depressing day of my life. It took away all the hope.”
But the 66-year-old priest, whose parents came from ireland, is now walking with the help of crutches and is defying the odds. He credits his recovery on two things.
“God’s grace and good medical care,” said Murray.
Two months after his accident, amazingly Murray realized he could move his foot. Now, after four years of intense physical and spiritual therapy, he’s back on his feet.
Murray says the ordeal and his recovery has deepened his faith, but he says people often think a simple prayer will solve all their problems.
“They think all they have to do is say some prayers and sit back and wait for the magic,” he said. “It doesn’t work that way. You say some prayers. You recognize the different invitations from God.”
Murray found his invitations in physical therapy sessions and his continuing ministry at the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Brooklyn.
“He took me from the depths to an amazing healing,” Murray said. “I don’t know where he’s going to take me over the next four years, but I’m ready for the journey.”