Divorce and Alzheimer's

  • By: Joni and Friends
  • Sept. 15, 2011
  • In the Media

A Statement by Joni Eareckson Tada on Pat Robertson's comment on Divorce and Alzheimer's

“Any marriage has its challenges, but add a serious disability and they can, at times, seem overwhelming. This is why God instituted marriage as a lifelong commitment – Heaven knows it requires vows, solemn and serious, to weather a couple through the demands of disability."

“I was dismayed when this week Pat Robertson said to a nationwide audience that Alzheimer's disease is a kind of death that makes divorce justifiable. When a Christian leader views marriage on a sliding scale, what does this say to the millions of couples who must deal daily with catastrophic injuries and illnesses?"

“At the Joni and Friends International Disability Center, we encounter thousands of couples who, despite living with serious disabling conditions, showcase the grace of God in their weakness every day. Marriage is designed to be a picture of God’s sacrificial love for us. Alzheimer’s disease is never an ‘accident’ in a marriage; it falls under the purview of God’s sovereignty. In the case of someone with Alzheimer's, this means God's unconditional and sacrificial love has an opportunity to be even more gloriously displayed in a life together!”


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yes joni while graduating in 1979 had a car accident with my jeep having a brain injury and graduating in 1979 living on a lake Winnebago received your first book and read it. the lord saved me from that jeep accident , and then in recovery dove in lake by my home and split my head open and had stiches in shape of a V.after reading your testimony has has meant . so much for me through the years. for the past 25 years now have worked for a theme park SilverDollarCity. my grandmother brought me to in summer of 1971.pray for your healing after watching john Ankerberg today. thanks again joni and pray for your marriage. Bart
  • March 25, 2014
  • 4:46 p.m.
  • BartBaker
Yes Joni you are so right in your comment about what Pat Robertson said that you may consider Divorcing your mate if they contract Alzheimer's Disease. I am ashamed of Pats comment. A man of God that I have admired for many years. I wonder if his wife feels the same way his does? Whatever happen to the Marriage Vows for better or for worse; in Sickness & in Health? I think Pat needs to re-evaluate his comment & take a Closer look at his Bible & his Commitment to Marriage. His comment sounds to me like an excuse not to be bother in caring for you love one, but put them away for a new mate. I Hope to God nothing like this ever happens to anyone especialy one who represents God.
  • Feb. 28, 2014
  • 7:29 p.m.
  • Ed Lugan
I agree,and it is through having a one to one relationship with Jesus that I do. Thinking outside this,I would go along with the other way of thinking. Joni, you are so right. Wow, you must long to be in glory. I do and I'm okey. Love, thoughts and prayers. Irene.
  • Aug. 25, 2012
  • 1:42 p.m.
  • irene
Of course Pat is wrong - dead wrong. The vow(s) of marriage are as sacred and unconditional as the Father's covenants with us. How, if two become one, do we divorce ourselves?
  • Aug. 20, 2012
  • 8:51 a.m.
  • Grant Kitting
The way our society views our fraile, sick and elderly is deteriorating. Even as advances in medicine are occuring to prolong life, our collective attitude toward those with special needs and mental challenges is barely accepting, at best. Jesus said marriage is a covenant. I don't think that means when your spouse loses their mind to a disease you abandon them. Pat Robertson opened his mouth and inserted his foot unfortunately on this one.
  • July 28, 2012
  • 4:48 a.m.
  • Amy
Alzheimer's isn't death. Being dead is death. The Bible is really not complicated. I have seen people twisting it lately to believe what they want to believe. For example, there is no hell. Either we believe the Bible or we don't. I wasn't the one who wrote it. Some things can be difficult to interpret but it is the things that are simple to interpret that people are twisting.
  • April 17, 2012
  • 7:39 a.m.
  • Janis
Divorce and Alzheimer's together. I can imagine how hard that can be. And it's not only about the mental condition of the person, but what's happening in their hearts. We cover many different areas of life at our divorce website that include mental and emotional.
  • Jan. 30, 2012
  • 11:13 a.m.
  • Ken
My Dad has altzheimers! He is a good Christian man! My mom takes care of him. We need your prayers! I asked Mom if she was angry at God for giving my Dad this terrible disease, when he doesn't seem to deserve it. Mom said she needed God too much to be mad at him. I struggle when I see men my Dad's age and they seem to be enjoying life with their loved ones! I need prayer! Happy Birthday to your husband! I pray God will Bless both of you!
  • Dec. 12, 2011
  • 8:42 p.m.
  • Cindy Carrington
Thank you so much for your courage in speaking out on this issue. God is sovereign and full of mercy. I pray to our Lord that He will bless Ken and you forever. I expect to watch you dance in eternity under the admiring eyes of all the saints and angels before the throne of our King of Kings and Lord of all.
  • Dec. 10, 2011
  • 12:43 p.m.
  • Chungpeng Fan
Marriage is a sacred relationship of three, two divine creations of God and The Creator, himself. Therefore, I only wanted His blessing in a wife provided for me. I met a uniquely, special woman and for seven long, introspective years I searched for His confirmation she was my eternal mate. When I wed the beautiful bride God provided me, I knew beyond any human doubt she was delivered to me, non-stop from heaven itself. We have both considered our marriage vows sacred and lifelong, for better or worse. Over the short 36 years I have known this heavenly creature, only Godly, unconditional and sacrificial love have flowed from her heart and I praise God everyday I may witness His great love for me through her. 36 months ago I experienced a severe hemorrhagic bleeds that caused me to stroke. Each day, since that fateful morning, I have witnessed God's provision through her. She has gracefully attended my needs since that day with loving compassion, only through His loving provision.
  • Oct. 8, 2011
  • 11:45 a.m.
  • Karl Orellana
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