GREENSBORO, N.C. — A pastor in North Carolina is thankful to be alive after fighting a severe reaction to the novel coronavirus and spending 87 days in the hospital, followed by a number of complications even after returning home.
Rory Baker, who leads Fruit of the Spirit Ministries in Greensboro, contracted COVID-19 in April and was hooked up to a ventilator as his lungs were damaged. He was placed in a coma and had to be on dialysis to aid his kidney function.
Baker’s wife, Melissa, went to High Point Medical Center twice a day to pray for her husband as it seemed that his prognosis was bleak, and it brought her a sense of peace to be closer to him. As she could not enter the hospital, she stood at the entrance, laying oil-dabbed hands on the glass door. Baker also walked around the building daily in a prayer walk.
Rodney Simpson, a fitness coordinator at High Point, saw an increasing number of handprints on the door and wondered what was happening. He told 13NewsNow that, at first, he thought maybe someone was trying to break in or a homeless person was seeking to come inside.
But Simpson saw Baker outside one Sunday and asked her what she was doing. She explained that her husband was on a ventilator and that she was praying for him outside since she could not enter.
Baker feared that Simpson might ask her to leave, but instead, he offered to pray with her.
“It totally broke me. So many times we look at something or you look at a situation and it’s not as it appears,” Simpson told 13NewsNow. “[T]hat … was a wife praying for her husband, and the faith and the hope that was demonstrated at that moment and how it changed my perspective was just incredible.”
Pastor Baker, a father of seven, slowly began to improve and was able to leave the hospital in June, crediting God and the prayers of the people for his recovery.
“God has been faithful and prayers have been answered,” he told reporters.
Baker continued to struggle with complications in the weeks that followed, including anemia and having to undergo heart surgery earlier this month.
“I was a 54-year-old male, healthy, no health problems, not taking any medications and my life was turned upside down in a matter of days,” he noted.
This week, Baker and his wife told 13NewsNow that they are thankful that the Lord pulled them through the battle.
“I was in a coma. I had shingles. I had to be on dialysis. It’s just so many different things that happened, but I thank God that I lived to see this day,” he stated.
“I know there are a lot of families that are not to have this testimony, but truly I am grateful for it and everyone who has prayed for my family, for my husband’s continued healing in his body,” Mrs. Baker also remarked. “I’m just so grateful for that and thankful.”
Baker continues to undergo therapy in order to gain strength to return to the pulpit.