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Couple prayed for dead baby's resurrection instead of calling for help

30 September 2017

But the next day, police say a midwife warned Rachel Piland her baby had jaundice and should be taken to the doctor or a hospital.

The child died two days after that warning, according to the Lansing State Journal, and now the parents both face charges of involuntary manslaughter.

Jaundice is a relatively common condition in newborn babies, and it's often mild and goes away on its own.

"He said if treated, most likely she would've been alive", Scaccia testified.

Rachel and Joshua were each charged with a single count of involuntary manslaughter and released after posting $75,000 bond on September 21. At a hearing last week, Rachel requested a court-appointed attorney but has not yet received one.

She advised Rachel Piland to take her infant to a pediatrician or emergency room, Scaccia said.

A police detective testified in court last week that Rachel told the midwife "God. makes no mistakes" after the midwife urged her to take the baby to a doctor. "She indicated to the midwife that the baby was fine".

But Rachel refused, citing her faith in God's plan before cancelling the midwife's appointment for the following day.

The baby was delivered via midwife at their home one block east of the Lansing Country Club on February 6. Abigail's body was also found there by police
Couple prayed for dead baby's resurrection instead of calling for help

At one point, Rachel told her mother, Rebecca Kerr, what the midwife said after Rebecca told her daughter that Abigail's skin was not the right color. Rachel responded by telling her mother about the midwife's worries.

When tiny Abigail started to cough up blood, Rachel laid her on a windowsill and started warming her with a hairdryer, before listening to hours of sermons.

On the morning of February 9, the mother and daughter noticed blood coming out of Abigail's nose, and that the baby wasn't eating or breathing well. Kerr wanted to call for help but "Rachel would not allow her".

On Feb. 9, the suspect found her baby deceased in a bouncy seat, according to Fox News. Joshua allegedly did not want to perform CPR on the child because he only knew protocol for adults. They never called police, the detective said. "Joshua continued to massage Abigail, attempting to get her good air". The Pilands allegedly didn't try to get medical help even after Abigail was found lifeless February 9, instead calling friends and church members to come over and pray for the baby.

It wasn't until Rachel's brother, who lives in California, finally called the police that authorities learned of the death. They reportedly arrived to find the Pilands and three other people praying over the dead Abigail.

Joshua Piland has posted videos of missionary trips to Kenya with a Lansing-based Faith Tech Ministries, which describes itself online as nondenominational but similar to other "full gospel" or Pentecostal organizations. Its website says the Bible school has a strong message in the area of divine healing.

No one at Faith Tech Ministries answered the phone Wednesday afternoon and evening. Their next court date is October 5.

Couple prayed for dead baby's resurrection instead of calling for help