New Zealand-based youth evangelist Winkie Pratney is slowly
recovering from a stroke that caused a brain aneurysm the day after Christmas.
“Each day we’ve noticed marked improvement, and his
recall seems to be deepening,” wrote Pratney’s son, William Pratney, in a
Dec. 28 blog posting at winkiepratney.com. “He began writing in a
notepad we got him, attempting to remember things like people’s names, books he
has written, sermon topics he has spoken on.”
Affectionately called the “world’s oldest
teenager,” Winkie Pratney, 65, preaches to a half-million students each
year. In the last 30 years, he has written more than a dozen books on youth and
discipleship, including the best-selling manual Youth Aflame, and he has
partnered with such ministries as Campus Life, Master’s Commission, Youth With
a Mission and Teen Challenge.
Pratney began complaining of a headache the day after
Christmas and was rushed to an Auckland, New Zealand, hospital when his communication became confused. Doctors said he suffered a hemmorhagic stroke, which includes bleeding within the brain and in the inner and outer tissue covering the brain.
Though Pratney was released from the hospital Dec. 31, his
son said there continues to be swelling in Pratney’s brain, and his memory and
linguistic skills are returning slowly. In a blog posting on Tuesday, William
Pratney said his father’s recovery seemed to have slowed since he was first
discharged from the hospital.
“I want him to make progress, and quick, but he’s definitely
not acting like all the man I know him to be,” he wrote. “Part of him has been
lost. Part of him has died. And that part (that part of his brain or that part
of his functioning) is what we need to see revived.”
“The doctor said he would ‘never fully recover,”” William
Pratney continued. “And from a medical standpoint, apart from some kind of
miracle, he is right. But we believe in miracles. … We serve an awesome God,
and I believe that He gets the last word, the final say.”
William Pratney called the stroke a “satanic
attack” that was trying to stop his father’s international ministry, but
he is hopeful that with prayer support his father will be preaching again soon.
“We can’t say enough how grateful we are for all the
saints of God rallying together to lift up this servant of the Lord that he
might recover (fully), rise and once again go out to bring light and truth to
the nations,” he wrote.