Sunday, May 25, 2008

5-year-old adopted daughter of award-winning Christian singer died Wednesday

MARIA SUE CHAPMAN, DAUGHTER OF STEVEN CURTIS CHAPMAN, DIES IN ACCIDENT AT FAMILY HOME NASHVILLE, TN...5/21/08...

At approximately 5pm on the afternoon of Wednesday May 21st, Maria Sue Chapman, 5 years old and the youngest daughter to Steven and Mary Beth Chapman was struck in the driveway of the Chapman home in Franklin, TN. Maria was rushed to Vanderbilt Childrens Hospital in Nashville, transported by LifeFlight, but died of her injuries there. Maria is one of the close-knit family's six children, and one of their three adopted daughters. More than five years ago, Chapman and his wife MaryBeth founded The Shaohannah's Hope Ministry after bringing their first adopted daughter, Shaohannah, home from China. The ministry's goal is to help families reduce the financial barrier of adoption, and has provided grants to over 1700 families wishing to adopt orphans from around the world. Chapman is a five-time Grammy Award winner and has sold over 10 million albums and garnered 44 No. 1 singles. He has won more Gospel Music Association Awards than any other artist in history.

"Maria Sue Chapman, adopted and youngest daughter to Mary Beth and Steven Curtis Chapman, was killed Wednesday night in a tragic accident in the family driveway on Wednesday evening. She was LifeFlighted to Vanderbilt Children's Hospital but for only reasons God can explain she went home to Him... not to Franklin as we all so desperately wanted. Your prayers are needed for all in the Chapman family. This is a family who has so generously loved and given to so many. Just hours before this close knit family was celebrating the engagement of the oldest daughter Emily Chapman, and were just hours away from a graduation party marking Caleb Chapman's completion of high school. Now, they are preparing to bury a child who blew out 5 candles on a birthday cake less than 10 days ago. These words are unthinkable to type. And yet we trust in a God who was not surprised by this and because of Jesus I am certain through faith in Him we will see Maria again." - Jim Houser (Manager)

IN MEMORY OF MARIA:





CINDERELLA
by Steven Curtis Chapman

She spins and she sways
To whatever song plays
Without a care in the world
And I'm sitting here wearing
The weight of the world on my shoulders

It's been a long day
And there's still work to do
She's pulling at me
Saying "Dad, I need you

There's a ball at the castle
And I've been invited
And I need to practice my dancing
Oh, please, Daddy, please?"

So I will dance with Cinderella
While she is here in my arms
'Cause I know something the prince never knew
Oh, I will dance with Cinderella
I don't want to miss even one song
'Cause all too soon the clock will strike midnight
And she'll be gone...

She says he's a nice guy and I'd be impressed
She wants to know if I approve of the dress
She says, "Dad, the prom is just one week away
And I need to practice my dancing
Oh, please, Daddy, please?"

So I will dance with Cinderella
While she is here in my arms
'Cause I know something the prince never knew
Oh, I will dance with Cinderella
I don't want to miss even one song
'Cause all too soon the clock will strike midnight
And she'll be gone

She will be gone

Well, she came home today with a ring on her hand
Just glowing and telling us all they had planned
She says, "Dad, the wedding's still six months away
But I need to practice my dancing
Oh, please, Daddy, please?"

So I will dance with Cinderella
While she is here in my arms
'Cause I know something the prince never knew
Oh, I will dance with Cinderella
I don't want to miss even one song
'Cause all too soon the clock will strike midnight
And she'll be gone


News story:

http://blog.mlive.com/grpress/2008/05/musician_steven_curtis_chapman.html

http://www.newsday.com/entertainment/music/ny-etcurtis0523,0,2146841.story

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24766629/

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5hCX0xYfGnwKXZ56bJKPQoZGnyBKgD90QLK081

http://www.wibw.com/home/headlines/19169539.html

http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/chi-steven-curtis-chapman-daughter-080522-ht,0,6846919.story

More about Steven Curtis Chapman:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steven_Curtis_Chapman

7 comments:

thekingpin68 said...

The friend (and family) I visited with after church today are acquaintance friends with the Chapman family. They lived in the same area of Tennessee.
This is very sad, and a reminder of the problem of evil. We ultimately need a better deal from God, and the gospel provides this better deal.

Jeff said...

The friend (and family) I visited with after church today are acquaintance friends with the Chapman family. They lived in the same area of Tennessee.

Really? Wow! That's interesting!

At one Evangelical Lutheran/Charismatic church I used to attend years ago, there was a family who had a young teenage son who had cancer. They prayed for the son to be healed, and his cancer went into remission. Well, the father began giving talks in front of the congregation of how wonderful God was, and how God heals. And the Pastor began bragging on the father's strong faith, in front of the entire congregation. The father quickly seemed to become the Pastor's favorite person.

Months (or so) later, the son died. He was maybe 13 years old, I think. The father and his family immediately left the church and never came back. The father had put his faith in the apparent miracle, and not truly in Jesus. This reminds me of the crowd that followed Jesus because of the miracles He did, and the food He miraculously provided, but, when Jesus began teaching more serious stuff, they left Him, in John 6:60-66. (Hmmm...almost like '666'...interesting...)

Today, it seems that many people come to Jesus so that He can improve their lives, instead of because of the fact that He is Lord. They want to hear a positive, motivational message that makes them feel good; they don't want to hear about repentance or Hell. Yet, Jesus preached a LOT on repentance and Hell.

thekingpin68 said...

That is a sad but important story, Jeff.

Jeff said...

Here are two of the family's websites:



Jeff said...

Oops! I pasted empty links.
Let me try that again...

Here is the link for the website in memory of MARIA SUE CHAPMAN, daughter of STEVEN CURTIS CHAPMAN:
http://www.stevencurtischapman.com/

And here is the link to their website, Shaohannah's Hope, which is dedicated to helping prospective adoptive parents overcome the financial barriers associated with adoption:
http://members.shaohannahshope.org

Frankenstein said...

God bless! 5 steps from Grief to Grace is my advice to the Chapmans, and you – you may read here my new essay on the subject: http://frankahilario.blogspot.com/

Jeff said...

Frankenstein,

Thank you for your comment, and for dropping by. I read your latest two blog posts and left comments. Your '5 Stages of Grief' are a helpful attempt to try to generally define what people go through when they grieve. Obviously, not everyone goes through exactly the same process, and not everyone goes through things in the same order, but there are some similarities.

I appreciate the fact that you are such a Steven Curtis Chapman fan.
You wrote on your blog site, After all, this is Steven Curtis Chapman, Gospel music genius, who has won 5 Grammy Awards and 54 Dove Awards, who has sold over 10 million albums and sang 44 #1 hit singles. With him being so famous and having written so many award-winning gospel songs, my guess is that a lot of Christians have tended to think that Steven Curtis Chapman must be a really strong Christian. And yet, with such a tragedy as he and his family are now dealing with, they will have to draw on every ounce of faith they have.

I have a book called "Amazing Grace," by Kenneth W. Osbeck, that gives a brief summary of each of 366 Hymns, and the tragic stories that prompted the writings of those hymns. There are also similar books that tell the background circumstances behind the writing of the great Hymns of old, most of which are extremely tragic, in which there was much deep heartache, yet which led the writer/composer of the hymn to not only express their grief, but also to express their faith in a God Who is sovereign and loving, even in the midst of the worst, most horrible tragedies. When something horrible and terrible happens to you, it is then that the amount of faith you have (or don't have) is truly shown for what it is.