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Stranger At Vacation Bible School Donates Kidney To 8-Year-Old Girl


A miracle can happen at the most unexpected time. But a miracle is what eight-year-old Abby Steinard needed. Instead of running and being with her friends at Vacation Bible School, Steinard endured more than nine hours of dialysis—the process of removing excess water and toxins from the blood—to correct her failing kidneys.

She needed a miracle and Kari Woods decided it was up to her to help Steinard get back to the way she once was.

Called To Help

At her Connersville, Indiana, church’s 2017 Vacation Bible School, everyone joined Woods in praying for Steinard’s failing kidneys. Even though she didn’t know the young girl, Woods prayed for an answer. But, she wasn’t expecting a voice to call to her.

Fox 59

“I kept feeling a voice tell me, ‘Give her your kidney,’ and I just kind of put it in the back of my mind,” Woods said. “And I kept hearing, ‘No, give her your kidney.’”

Then Woods learned Steinard needed a kidney donor with O negative blood type— the same as Woods. She was confident God was talking to her.

Donating Her Kidney

It didn’t take long for Woods to agree to donate one of her kidneys to Steinard. “I only need one kidney,” she reasoned.

Inside Edition

She knew donating her kidney was necessary for saving the girl’s life. In December 2017, the mother of five and the now nine-year-old checked into St. Vincent Hospital for the kidney transplant. Woods prayed it was a successful operation, but she had nothing to worry about.

No Longer Strangers

After the surgery, Steinard started to get her color back and was no longer on dialysis. Now, a year later, Vacation Bible School is an entirely different experience for everyone involved.

Steinard doesn’t run out of energy when she plays with the other children. But, she hasn’t forgotten about Woods, who is now like a member of her family instead of a stranger at church.

Inside Edition

“It’s definitely a blessing,” Woods commented about the life-saving surgery. “It’s hard to compare that to giving birth to a child, but it’s like that in the sense that you’re saving a life.”

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