Divorce and Alzheimer's

  • By: Joni and Friends
  • Sept. 15, 2011
  • In the Media

A Statement by Joni Eareckson Tada on Pat Robertson's comment on Divorce and Alzheimer's

“Any marriage has its challenges, but add a serious disability and they can, at times, seem overwhelming. This is why God instituted marriage as a lifelong commitment – Heaven knows it requires vows, solemn and serious, to weather a couple through the demands of disability."

“I was dismayed when this week Pat Robertson said to a nationwide audience that Alzheimer's disease is a kind of death that makes divorce justifiable. When a Christian leader views marriage on a sliding scale, what does this say to the millions of couples who must deal daily with catastrophic injuries and illnesses?"

“At the Joni and Friends International Disability Center, we encounter thousands of couples who, despite living with serious disabling conditions, showcase the grace of God in their weakness every day. Marriage is designed to be a picture of God’s sacrificial love for us. Alzheimer’s disease is never an ‘accident’ in a marriage; it falls under the purview of God’s sovereignty. In the case of someone with Alzheimer's, this means God's unconditional and sacrificial love has an opportunity to be even more gloriously displayed in a life together!”


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Joni and friends I just bought your study bible beyond suffering I have many bibles but this is by far the one I receive the most from. Yes I am disabled use a Delete repeated word chair. chronic pain due to back surgery that went wrong. I am a Christian and I try not to give in to the upside downs as I call the bad day but some days I fail all the way around. My new bible has already opened my eyes and heart to things I never would have before. thank you
  • Jan. 7, 2017
  • 7:42 a.m.
  • Dixie L Sellers
Having known JET and others whose faith is tested each moment due to unexpected or known disabilities.. We need to focus on Gods grace our vows and what they truly mean to us... In the seemingly self sacrificial acts of loved ones... Gods love and graces shine... Love to you Joni and Mr. T... Miss you guys! Joseph Leonard Marraccino... WLV
  • March 9, 2016
  • 1:55 p.m.
  • Joseph
Alzheimer's patients require around the clock care and monitoring, which is exhausting to the caregiver. You can't be there for your loved one and provide high quality of care if you are physically worn out and emotionally spent all the time. It's also possible you'll spend so much time caregiving and worrying that you won't be able to enjoy spending time with the person.
  • Feb. 17, 2016
  • 3:49 p.m.
  • Julia
You have been an inspiration to me in this recent diagnosis of ALS. I see how God has used you because of your accident & how courageous you have been.
  • Sept. 27, 2015
  • 2:11 p.m.
  • Patricia Turner
How thankful we are for you!we see the lord glorious in you we know it is not easy but god magnificent hand is enough day by day to be with is through those to med that we know he understands like no other he is the comforterđź’• he sees us through .please pray for my daughter Christina .she will be 28 November 27th.she struggled with misdiagnosed Lyme since she was 11 massive headaches and structural difficulties allergies ,intestinal issues .being officially diagnosed when she had a dream there was a tick behind her knee and found t and went to doctor next day was given an antibiotic . Three weeks later had seizure neurological symptoms and know working hard to make her stand with the word for f god to strengthen her.please pray.if you are ever I upstate new York please see us you are an inspiration.with love and prayer for continued strength from day to day for you.with love prob. 4:5-6
  • Sept. 8, 2015
  • 7:14 p.m.
  • diana galeoto
Thank You! Marriage is a life long commitment. We will be married 62 years next Saturday. Alzhiemer's has been our companion for many years now and God has given me a new love for my husband. He knows what we need and gives us grace for every problem.
  • Aug. 9, 2015
  • 2:45 p.m.
  • Mary Lou Preston
Apparently Pat Robertson never saw the movie "A Vow to Cherish," which dealt with marriage and Alzheimer's. It showed the increasing challenges, the temptation to bail, but also God's faithfulness. My mother cared for my dad after a near-fatal stroke; she and I cared for him in his final health battle (incurable cancer). Mom never even entertained the idea of leaving my dad. Unfortunately, I can't say the same for my 32-year marriage when I faced extended, very serious health issues. God is bigger than every challenge. We like to embrace that, but what we resist is that the outcome may not be as we expect it should be. God never says "oops" and doesn't switch to a "Plan B" when our perceptions of what we "deserve" (e.g., a carefree retirement) don't pan out in reality.
  • Aug. 3, 2015
  • 7:40 p.m.
  • Lana Christian
That's right, Jodi. I pray Pat comes to that understanding and revelation of Christ's love.
  • May 22, 2015
  • 2:32 p.m.
  • Sara
Accidentally posted an unfinished comment while editing it. Just wanted Joni to know that she has been one of my few heroes for over 35 years. Her love for God has inspired me to love Him even more. Thank you for speaking truth.
  • Jan. 22, 2015
  • 7:12 a.m.
  • Rosario Kowalski
I have admired Joni from the first time I heard her story over 35 years ago and continue to be inspired by her love for God. I want to thank her for being bold to speak the truth even when it is contrary to the opinions of solid Christian leaders. Mr. Robertson's statement was most unkind and hurtful and I pray that he has recanted. Alzheimer is brutal and ugly and miserably all-consuming especially for the family. Life is hard and no one is entitled to a trouble-free life. The false health, wealth, and prosperity gospel has caused us to stray and stumble.
  • Jan. 22, 2015
  • 6:45 a.m.
  • Rosario Kowalski
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