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When Calvary Church of Grand Rapids, Michigan, called Ed Dobson as their pastor 14 years ago, they welcomed a man whose bold nature and strong opinions had already sparked controversy nationwide. Ed was a leader in the Moral Majority and an associate of Jerry Falwell. When he came to Calvary, the church began launching ministries that defied stereotype and convention—across racial lines, to AIDS patients, and to the homeless.

Today Calvary Church has grown in size and influence. They recently released nearly a thousand members to help plant Mars Hill, a church for those disillusioned with the typical Sunday morning meeting house.

Calvary Church is going strong. But its pastor is growing weaker.

Ten months ago Ed was waiting on a diagnosis. Symptoms of something ominous were growing worse. The doctors couldn't be absolutely sure, but they determined Ed most likely was suffering from Amyotropic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), better known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The neuro-muscular disease is ...

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