“Hi, Sean…” the letter began—people are always calling me that. “…I just read your article in the newspaper about angels!
“No offense, but I laughed the whole way through. I wasn’t laughing with you, I was laughing AT you! I cannot believe in the 21st Century, humans still believe in angels. It’s stupid. I’ll take my answer off the air.”
I love it when people say “no offense.” It’s a lot like when the doctor tells you to drop your trousers, then he flicks his syringe and says, “You won’t feel a thing.”
The truth is, friend, I used to doubt the existence of angels, too. But then I realized I was in the minority.
Did you know that nearly eight out of every 10 Americans believe in angels? For the math challenged, that’s a whole dang lot of people. When it comes to global figures, seven out of 10 humans believe in angels.
This is remarkable when you figure that only 33 percent of humans classify themselves as Christian; 10 percent are Protestant, and only 3 percent call themselves SEC fans.
What I’m getting at is that more humans agree on the existence of angels than they do on any other topic, with the exception of their mutual hatred of Miracle Whip.
I know this is true from first hand experience. When I started writing this column, about a decade ago, I was much more handsome, and my metabolism was like a hummingbird’s.
But also, back then I was on the fence about angels. This all changed when I wrote my first column about the supernatural, based on stories sent in by readers.
After the column ran in our local paper, my inbox was flooded with angel stories. The stories have kept coming in from all over the U.S. Just this week, I have received nearly 40 stories on angels. They have come from people all over. Including Canada. (“When is Canada’s cold season? From October until the following October.”)
For example, I received a story from Francis, in West Virginia, who writes:
“My brother died in a car accident when I was 12 years old… The day after his funeral, I cried myself to sleep…
“That same night I was awoken by a man who was wearing all-white. He said my brother was okay, and asked if I wanted to see him again. I said yes…
“My brother came into my bedroom and sat down on my bed, and told me he loved me. I thought it was just a dream, but the next morning, at breakfast, my mom and my uncle both said they had the same dream.”
Or how about this letter from a guy near Monteagle, Tennessee.
“My mom was with my father as he lay dying in the hospital. Mom was crying and telling God to take Dad so he wouldn’t suffer. She hadn’t slept in three days because she had been up with him, waiting for him to pass.
“That evening, a stranger came into the room and told her it would be okay, and she could let go. Then she fell asleep. The next morning, my dad was gone.”
And there was the story I heard a few days ago, from someone in North Alabama.
“My friend was in the hospital, and they had just taken him off his breathing machine, and told him he would probably die.
“That night, he was struggling to breathe, when this Mexican nurse came into the room and laid on his bed and held him. She told him it was going to be okay, and she started praying for him in Spanish. For two solid hours, she prayed. By the end of her prayer, he could breathe normally, and he had the best sleep of his life.
“The next morning, he told the medical staffers about it, and they told him, ‘There are no Spanish-speaking nurses here.’”
So I don’t mind if you laugh at me, sir. I can take it. But I hope you’ll forgive the eight out of 10 Americans who are laughing at you.
Sean Dietrich is a columnist and novelist known for his commentary on life in the American South. He has authored nine books and is the creator of the “Sean of the South” blog and podcast. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to [email protected].
Don’t miss out! Subscribe to our newsletter and get our top stories every weekday morning.