The Shield About Me: A Day of Thanksgiving for Rosario Rodriguez

Sometimes God’s greatest miracle comes in our darkest hour

by Gary David Stratton

“Rosario’s been shot!”  Act One alum Chris Dyball cried into his phone as I struggled to take in his words. It was past midnight on my the midwest   fundraising trip and my groggy mind could barely wrap my mind around the tragedy back in L.A.

Beloved Act One staff member Rosario Rodriguez had been shot in the chest at point blank range in an apparent gang initiation robbery gone wrong.  As I frantically organized a response from 1500 miles away, I began to plead with God for Rosario’s life. Soon thousands more would join in intercession for Rosario.

At the time, none of us could have imagined the kind of miracle we were asking for.  The survival rate for a victims of esophageal gunshot wounds is normally 0%.

Tonight, I am full of gratitude that the Lord so graciously answered the prayers of everyone calling out to Him on Rosarios’s behalf. As the full details of the shooting became known, we all began to fully appreciate what a miracle Jesus had performed.

I also vividly remember the night when the Act One staff accompanied Rosario as she went to the place of her shooting for the first time. I cannot fully explain why, but our prayer time together was one of the most sacred experiences of my life.

We all sensed that the enemy had tried to take Rosario’s life to prevent her from fulfilling her life calling. Yet we also saw so clearly that the Lord has spared her life because her calling was too crucial to the kingdom of God to bring her home just yet. Ironically, as Rosario continues her recovery, the shooting has opened avenues to fulfill her calling that none of us could have imagined.

Rosario is one of the most beautiful and courageous women of God I have ever met. Please read Rosario’s story and her sister’s two year anniversary memorial on Rosario’s blog The Shield About Me.

I can’t wait to see all that God will do in and through her in the years to come.

But tonight, I am just thanking God for Rosario!



Welcome to My Story

On June 29th, 2009 I was a victim of a robbery and was shot in the chest.

The doctors are calling me a miracle as the bullet missed my heart by 1 cm. My esophagus was hit by the bullet and  severely damaged while fragments of the bullet hit both of my lungs.

It took 8 hours of intense surgery to repair my esophagus. The doctors placed two tubes in my right lung and one in my left to drain them after they collapsed.

My doctors and surgeons said I would spend at least two months in the hospital but thanks to the prayers from many around the world and by the Grace of God I was released only 10 days after the incident.  I spent a month and a half recovering in LA where I had been living and my friends took very good care of me.

I have now flown home to west Michigan to stay with my family and am working my way to a full recovery, which will take about two years.

This blog follows my journey of recovery, the trial, whatever is going on in my life and whatever is on my mind. I hope you enjoy!

Thank you for all of your prayers and support… they are greatly needed & appreciated!

God is Sovereign!

~Rosario Rodriguez

A Day of Thanksgiving

Today is a day of thanksgiving, as well as reminiscing and contemplation.  Today we remember how our lives, especially Rosario’s, changed for the better two years ago.  Why for the better?  Well, the outcome of the shooting on June 29, 2009 could have easily been for the worse.  I don’t often think about how close we came to losing Rosario that day – it’s too heart-wrenching to dwell on – but the truth is Rosario could have died.  But she didn’t.  She didn’t.  God, in his infinite mercy and wisdom, wasn’t quite finished with his beautiful vessel named Rosario.  So He intervened and thus we find ourselves two years later celebrating the anniversary of Rosario’s second chance at life.

As many of you are aware, it has not been an easy life.  Rosario’s physical recovery…

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2 Replies to “The Shield About Me: A Day of Thanksgiving for Rosario Rodriguez”

  1. Gary,

    I am always amazed when I hear other perspectives of those first moments, days and weeks after the shooting. Thank you for your prayers and support. And thanks for sharing your part of Rosario's story.

    With faith, hope & charity,

  2. Gary,

    It is amazing to hear the same story from different perspectives! Rosario has and continues to inspire many people. Thank you for all your prayers and support! And thank you for sharing your part of Rosario’s story.

    With faith, hope & charity,


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