Bertha Paul in the tub with her sister, Mary Miller, and Pastor Timothy Lee

By Deborah Moore, business development director


When Pastor Timothy Lee called Life Care Center of Cape Girardeau, Missouri, with an unusual request, he expected to hear a negative response.


That certainly is not what happened when Lee asked if it would be possible to baptize one of the residents. The answer, which had already been shared with family members, was a resounding, “Yes, we can make that happen!”


Resident Bertha Paul’s family attends the Apostolic Promise Church in Cape Girardeau, where Lee is pastor, and they had approached him about the possibility of baptizing her at the facility. The family members also talked with Ethan Sachs, licensed practical nurse, and discussed ways to accomplish this. The question: How can we perform an immersion baptism in a skilled nursing facility that has no chapel or baptistry?


In reality, the answer was simple. Paul was baptized by her minister, with her family and friends present, in the privacy of the spa room. A team of nursing staff, led by Sachs, gently lowered her into the large spa tub. With the assistance of associates, Lee lowered her head into the gently flowing warm water. Prayers and tears filled the room as she lifted her tiny head and quietly whispered praise of her own.


Kindness and gifts come in many forms. For the Bertha Paul family, the willingness of Sachs to take the responsibility of arranging and coordinating this baptism certainly hit the top of the kindness list. All the associates and friends involved in accomplishing this important task for her left the very significant event filled with the satisfaction of having given an unusually special gift.


That’s what we do at Life Care Center of Cape Girardeau!