New Book by St. Joseph’s Professor Searches for Meaning During Hardest Moments of Her Life

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Image via Charles Fox, The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Maria Kefalas, a renowned St. Joseph’s University sociologist, has published a book about the grief of raising a daughter destined to die.

Maria Kefalas, a renowned St. Joseph’s University sociologist, has published a new book about the grief of raising a daughter destined to die, writes Alfred Lubrano for The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Harnessing Grief: A Mother’s Quest for Meaning and Miracles lays bare all the tragedy and pain that came from dealing with her daughter, Calliope Joy, going blind and paralyzed from a rare genetic disease at the same time her husband Patrick Carr, was fighting late-stage cancer.

The book is permeated with Kefalas’ humanity and desire to find some meaning among these shattered pieces.

The Bala Cynwyd author’s husband passed away last year at 53. Her daughter is 11 years old now and has defied science by living longer than anybody anticipated.

With her determination to find a way to “harness grief as a superpower,” Kefalas has managed to help other children by using a stunning breakthrough in the treatment of her daughter’s disease, metachromatic leukodystrophy.

“The most selfless thing you can do is save other children’s lives when you can’t save your own child’s,” said Amy Waldman, a pediatric neurologist and medical director of CHOP’s Leukodystrophy Center of Excellence.

Read more about Maria Kefalas at The Philadelphia Inquirer by clicking here.

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