Catholic priest helps woman deliver her twin baby boys – and revived one of them after he stopped breathing – outside cathedral in Washington state after hearing her cries for help
- Father Jesus Mariscal was popping out to get donuts when he discovered the homeless woman in the grounds of St. Paul Cathedral in Yakima, Washington
- Pregnant woman called out for help as she went into labor with twin boys
- Father Mariscal had to revive one of the boys who was trapped in the amniotic sac but both babies are now healthy and the mother has left hospital
A Catholic priest helped deliver a homeless woman’s twin baby boys and revived one when it stopped breathing after hearing her cries for help outside his cathedral.
Parochial vicar at St. Paul Cathedral in Yakima, Washington, Father Jesús Mariscal, was popping out to buy donuts in September when he found a homeless woman in distress.
She was standing in the grounds of the Cathedral, near a statue of the Our Lady of Immaculate Conception yelling” ‘I need help, I’m having a baby.’
Father Mariscal told nonprofit Catholic Extension that he couldn’t believe it at first, but then he looked closer and saw blood at her feet.
She said: ‘I’m having it now, I’m having it now.’
Paramedics arrived to and took the mother and babies to hospital
He called 911 and placed the phone on speaker to follow the operator’s instructions before helping the woman lie down.
Within seconds, she gave birth to a baby boy. Father Mariscal handed her the baby and leaned back relieved.
But then she shouted: ‘I’m having another.’
Father Mariscal delivered the second boy, but he was still trapped in the amniotic sac.
The 911 operator told him to break the sac open, but Father Mariscal didn’t have any tools so had to use his hands to burst it.
He got the baby out only to find he wasn’t breathing and the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck.
Father Mariscal laid him on his side and tapped him on the back until he started breathing.
He said: ‘It was a surreal experience. It was like something from a movie.
Father Mariscal called 911 and followed the operators instructions to deliver the two babies
The mother was standing in the grounds of the cathedral
‘I was there holding a baby with my bloody hands, and the baby was all bloody as well, and I’m dressed in clerics. And I’m a priest in front of the shrine of Our Lady.
‘And I was thinking, “What is God trying to tell me? What are you trying to tell me God? What is this about?”‘
As he ran inside to get towels, the paramedics arrived and took over.
Father Mariscal had been meant to meet a engaged couple for a marriage preparation and had to text them to apologize for being late.
He said: ‘I’m sorry I’m late for our appointment. I was just helping a lady deliver twins.’
Assuming he was joking, they replied: ‘LOL Father. You don’t have to lie.’
The woman and her babies were taken to hospital. They were born premature at 30 weeks, but they are doing well.
Father Mariscal works with migrant workers in Washington state
Father Mariscal does not know who the mother is and she left the hospital a few hours after being admitted and reportedly has not returned.
He said: ‘It’s a beautiful story on one side, but heartbreaking on the other.’
More than 25,000 people were considered homeless in a single night last January in Washington state, 10 per cent more than in 2020, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Yakima Bishop Joseph J. Tyson told Fox News: ‘My hope is that this situation also would raise awareness of the political and social conditions surrounding homelessness.
‘Acting as sisters and brothers to those who are poor and marginalized, we journey with them as they seek solutions to their problems, address their challenges and take their rightful place in our communities.’
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