Religion

Faith Healing Parents Headed To Prison After Letting Second Child In Four Years Die

| by Jonathan Wolfe

For the second time in four years, Herbert and Catherine Schaible let one of their children die of a treatable illness. Today, they were both sentenced to 3-7 years in prison followed by 30 months of probation.

Philadelphia Common Pleas Judge Benjamin Lerner spoke to the Schaibles as he handed down their sentences. 

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A judge looked this inmate straight in the eyes and said something that left the entire courtroom in tears:

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A judge looked this inmate straight in the eyes and said something that left the entire courtroom in tears:

"You've killed two of your children," he said. "Not God, not your church, not religious devotion -- you."

“We believe in divine healing, that Jesus shed blood for our healing and that he died on the cross to break the devil’s power,” Hebert Schaible said in a 2013 statement. Medicine, Schaible said, “is against our religious beliefs.”

In 2009, the family’s two-year-old son, Kent, died of untreated pneumonia. Following Kent’s death, a Pennsylvania judge put the Schaibles on parole. One of the terms of their parole was that they must seek medical attention if their children get sick.

In 2013, their 8-month-old son, Brandon, fell ill. They did not seek out medical attention, and Brandon died. Upon discovering Brandon’s death, authorities charged the Schaibles with third-degree murder.

Following Brandon’s death, a furious judge told the Schaibles that Brandon’s death sounded “eerily similar” to Kent’s.

The Schaibles' pastor, meanwhile, said their children keep dying because of a “spiritual lack” in their lives. He insisted the family would not seek medical attention even if another one of their children fell ill. 

This shouldn't be a problem anytime soon, as the Schaible parents are now in prison. Their six surviving children have been placed in foster care. 

Sources: Huffington Post, The Times Herald