Former EWTN News president Dan Burke was admitted to the intensive care unit for coronavirus symptoms. We requested prayers from our readers, as his condition was very serious.
He also has a lifelong lung condition, making him much more susceptible to death.
“I am alive because of your prayers,” Burke emotionally explained with his wife, Stephanie, in a livestream Q&A podcast on Sunday night. “In fact, I don’t just believe it. I know it. There is no way I should have come out of that ICU. So thank you.”
Dan told his son when the virus became global threat, “‘If I get it, you need to understand that will be it for me.’”
Dan and Stephanie then explained that they both contracted COVID-19 while traveling between the Dallas-Fort Worth and Denver International Airports. They began showing symptoms on Mar. 17, about eight days after traveling.
On Mar. 21, the Burkes headed to the hospital. Stephanie said she “was weeping,” while praying with Dan, who “wrote his will in the car.”
“In the midst of this darkness, I had a real sense that this was Good Friday. This was our Calvary. This was Golgotha. The heaviness and the darkness was so profound.”
As they admitted him to the hospital, Stephanie said she didn’t know “if she would see Dan again,” because they had to separate. “I offered up my suffering for him” and others.
Dan said he was “ready to die” and “at peace with that.”
I’ve had more hospitalizations than I can even remember,” he said. “I was thinking about all of you and preparing to make my suffering count by joining it with the suffering of Christ and offering it up for all of the prayer requests, the Apostoli Viae and all the suffering of the world.”
He and Stephanie also explained that the hospital eventually put him on a ventilator for three days. He described his experience with the virus as one of the darkest moments of his life.
“Though I didn’t have despair, I also didn’t have an interior sense of any comfort in any way. But I wasn’t anxious. No comfort. Only blackness.”
Dan later thanked all of the medical staff, doctors, nurses and every person who helped care for him.
One nurse asked in the livestream how they could help patients. Dan responded, “God bless you guys…I could hear the care and love [from the nurses]. Giving love is everything,” he continued. “When I could talk…I wanted them to know I appreciated them.”
“I am grateful that I have studied and lived this reality so deeply before facing this kind of storm.”