God ‘Answered a Lot of Prayers’: Scalise Discusses Faith, Cancer Recovery

Scalise, a 16-year veteran of Capitol Hill and the number two Republican in the U.S. House, started chemotherapy the day after he was diagnosed with blood cancer.

U.S. House Majority Leader Steve Scalise says he is “very blessed” that the doctors caught the cancer early enough, and that the treatments worked.
U.S. House Majority Leader Steve Scalise says he is “very blessed” that the doctors caught the cancer early enough, and that the treatments worked. (photo: EWTN News Nightly / EWTN Newa)

In an exclusive update on his health this week, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise discussed with EWTN News Nightly the role prayer and his Catholic faith played in his recovery from blood cancer. 

“For so many people that are watching, that said prayers and offered just true, genuine support, I can‘t thank everybody enough — because you feel that when you’re going through things,” Scalise said during an interview with EWTN News Capitol Hill correspondent Erik Rosales. 

“And thank God, God performed a lot of miracles and answered a lot of prayers,” he added. 

Scalise, a 16-year veteran of Capitol Hill and the number two Republican in the U.S. House, started chemotherapy the day after he was diagnosed with blood cancer. After four months, he was isolated for 6 weeks for a stem cell transplant.  

“I have a pretty intense job, and I missed being away. But I knew I had to focus on my health, and we did. We zoned in really tightly,” Scalise said.

Scalise said he was “very blessed” that the doctors caught the cancer early enough, and that the treatments worked. 

When asked what he would say to someone battling a similar illness, Scalise said that “God gives you the strength to get through it.” 

“He puts people around you; and recognize that it‘s not just God himself in the flesh, it’s doctors and friends and other people that are in your life that can help you get through those tough times,” he explained. 

In 2017, Scalise almost died after being shot by a progressive activist, but he said the experience “strengthened” his faith. 

“His intent was to kill all of us on that ball field,” Scalise said of the shooter. “Again, God performed miracles that day — [there‘s] no other way to explain some of the things that happened. In the hospital, my doctor said I didn’t even have another minute to spare.”

“It also puts a different focus on what is really important in life,” he added in reference to his injury. “I said, I‘ve got to put this in God’s hands. I said some really direct prayers to God, asked him for some heady things. I started thinking about my young kids, my daughter, and wanted to make sure I could go to her wedding.”

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