Christian Chronicle

‘We only need one to live’

Desperate to save a beloved older member, a church ran an ad seeking a kidney donor. A thousand miles away, a young believer felt God prick her heart.

By Bobby Ross Jr. | The Christian Chronicle

NEW BERN, N.C. — Sam Birmingham needed a kidney. He desperately needed a kidney.

His quality of life — his life itself — depended on it. 

But the longtime Christian, who had always loved to fish and enjoy the water in this riverfront town near the North Carolina coast, was having trouble finding a donor.

A lot of trouble.

“It was getting really bad,” said Birmingham, 78, a father of four and grandfather of 13. 

“I was just worn out,” added the U.S. Coast Guard veteran, who has been married to his wife, Jan, for 42 years. “I couldn’t do anything.”

In the fall of 2019, Steve Hurst and Bob Markman, elders of the New Bern Church of Christ — Birmingham’s home congregation in this community of 31,000, about 115 miles southeast of Raleigh — decided to take action. 

“Bob and I got together one day and talked about the fact that we just couldn’t let Sam die,” Hurst recalled. “And we had The Christian Chronicle on the desk, and we decided we would get in touch.”

Read the full story.

This story appears in the online edition of The Christian Chronicle.

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