D. James Kennedy Hospitalized after Suffering Heart Attack

Dan Wooding | ASSIST News Service | Tuesday, January 2, 2007

D. James Kennedy Hospitalized after Suffering Heart Attack

Is showing signs of improvement

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL -- D. James Kennedy, author, theologian, biblical scholar, pastor of the 10,000-member “Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church” in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and founder of the highly influential Coral Ridge Ministries, is reportedly showing signs of improvement following a massive heart attack last week, says a story in www.WorldNetDaily.com.

“We're quite encouraged,” Kennedy spokesman John Aman told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

Aman indicated Kennedy had been taken off a ventilator, talked to people and responded to neurologists' commands to move his limbs.

Kennedy suffered the heart attack on Thursday, December 28 and was rushed from his home to a local hospital.

The WorldNetDaily (WND) story said that prayers for Kennedy's recovery from fellow Christian leaders are being echoed across the U.S.

Dr. James Dobson, founder of the Colorado-based Focus on the Family, said: “It has been my honor and pleasure to know him not only as a broadcasting colleague and a gifted pastor, but also as a dear friend for the past 30 years. He has been one of the nation's most powerful defenders of righteousness, never wavering from the eternal truths of Scripture. His voice is still vitally needed in this country and around the world. We are asking the Lord to restore the health of this good man, and to be with Anne and the rest of the Kennedy family during this challenging time.”

The WND story added that according to Mary Ann Bunker, Kennedy's long-time personal assistant, the 75-year-old Kennedy had a “severe” cardiac arrest Thursday night.

“He was home at the time,” she said, noting that “the last time he preached was on Christmas Eve. He was home in the kitchen. He fell, and his wife caught him, and gave him CPR until the ambulance arrived.”

Kennedy was taken to Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale. “The ambulance got [to Kennedy's home] in four to five minutes,” said Bunker, “and the hospital was less than five blocks away. And the doctors were ready for him before the ambulance even arrived.”

Fortunately, a CAT scan turned out normal, not disclosing any brain damage or other complications resulting from the heart attack.

Coral Ridge Senior Producer Jerry Newcombe, who has co-authored many books with Kennedy, told WND that another Presbyterian minister visited Kennedy and read scripture to him – to which he responded strongly.

That minister was the Rev. Richard D. Phillips is senior minister of First Presbyterian Church in Coral Springs/Margate, Florida (PCA).

He said, “I want to thank everyone who is praying for Dr. D. James Kennedy. His condition is improved, though very serious. I spent a good deal of time with him today, praying and reading Scripture. He recognized me and was clearly responsive, although his condition remains very serious. Please pray for continued improvement and a full restoration to health. I was able to assure him of the prayers of many Christians and he was able smile in response.

“It is my sincere hope that our readers will pray for Dr. Kennedy and his family in this time of need.”

© 2007 ASSIST News Service, used with permission