Rod Dreher called Ken a “national treasure,” and Rod is exactly right.  I have been blessed by a budding friendship with Ken, the founder and host of Mars Hill Audio.  We connected last year and were fast friends after discovering a shared love of (who else?) Oliver O’Donovan.

Yesterday, Ken experienced a massive heart attack.  It was, apparently, life threatening and they medically induced a coma.  Tonight, by way of a mutual friend, comes this email from a family member:

Date: November 6, 2011 7:51:50 PM CST

Subject: Miraculous!

Friends and Family,

There is no other word to describe what has happened to Ken. A bit more context: they had to shock him three times to bring him back, his body temperature was so high from the shocks that they were afraid of brain damage and needed to cool him down, and they didn’t expect him to regain consciousness until Monday. That was as of last night.

Well, when Dad and I walked in there shortly after noon today (I was gripped with fear at what I was about to see), Ken was sitting in a chair eating rice and beans and making jokes with Kate and the nurse! I don’t remember my reaction, but Ken later told me that I just burst out laughing – I guess out of relief and amazement. Had it not been for the hospital setting, it would have been hard to guess that anything had happened to him.

The nurse who attended him both when he came in yesterday and again today was amazed at his condition and had no explanation for it. The doctor told him this morning that “he is lucky to be here” – that’s how close to death he was. And, there he was eating rice and beans and telling jokes!

We, of course, know it was not luck. People around the globe were praying for him. Thank you all for your prayers and your encouraging e-mails. I hope to get back to each of you individually very soon. I truly have never experienced or witnessed such an act of God’s healing, although I know others have. My family is so grateful to have this wonderful sign of the power, love, and presence of God.

The doctors still have to determine if Ken needs further surgery beyond the stents that were put in yesterday. And, he is obviously tired and weak. So, we continue to pray for him. But, mostly we are thanking God for this miraculous healing.

Thank you all so much for your love and support.

In His Love,


Praise God for Ken’s recovery, and please continue to keep him and his family in your prayers.

And while you’re at it, this is an excellent time to support a ministry that is doing some of the best work out there at helping Christians think deeply and Christianly about the world.  I know of no better model for what Mere-O has tried to do than Ken, and you would do well to get a subscription to his excellent journal.


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Posted by Matthew Lee Anderson

Matthew Lee Anderson is the Founder and Lead Writer of Mere Orthodoxy. He is the author of Earthen Vessels: Why Our Bodies Matter to our Faith and The End of Our Exploring: A Book about Questioning and the Confidence of Faith. Follow him on Twitter or on Facebook.


  1. […] Ken suffered a significant heart attack two days ago, but apparently has also experienced a miraculous recovery.  After an induced coma and three shock treatments, he has emerged eating, joking and laughing with nurses and family.  See Matthew Lee Anderson’s blog for an email excerpt from a family member describing Ken’s condition: Mere Orthodoxy: Matthew Lee Anderson […]


  2. Ken – Susan and I want to send our very best wishes for a full recovery. We will be praying like mad.

    Take it easy and listen to lots of J.S.Bach.

    Edward Norman
    Vancouver BC
    (ex Charleston SC)


  3. I have been subscribing to MHAJ for years, and have known Ken for a couple. His work has benefitted me in countless ways. Thank God for preserving this servant.



  4. […] heart attack, followed by a miraculous recovery. The facts of the heart attack are laid out here and updates on Ken’s recovery are being posted […]


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