Monthly Archives: September 2016

Words About Prayer

During the second week after the book was published, I received an email wanting to more about the introductory sentence I cited in chapter 4 – prayer.  The email asked about the history of the phrase, information on the religious order of Christian Brothers, and where I went to school in Chicago growing up.

 “That’s a great opening line to all prayer.”  I’m just outside of St. Paul Minnesota.   Claude S.

I believe there are many facets to conquering cancer. Without science and medicine it would be a daunting task indeed, but they are not the only things in play. Outlook, lifestyle, and faith are also invaluable tools

As I mention throughout the book, prayer is an essential part of the cancer recovery process. Regardless of your faith or denomination, you need a level of prayer and dedication to get through the journey.  I attended a Catholic HS –  St. Patrick H.S. in Chicago, Illinois – centennial class 1961.



I am sure it has changed a great deal over the past half century.

Students and faculty routinely say an hourly and half-hour prayer throughout the day.  These prayers are always prefaced with the introductory sentence – “Let us remember we are in the holy presence of God, in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.”  And similarly – the prayer ends with the phrase, “Live Jesus in our hearts forever.”  The Christian Brother order was founded in France by Jean-Baptiste de La Salle.  The order is now based in Rome, Italy.

Go St. Pats  I invite you to visit the site




The Great Ant-Acid Caper


Recently I received an email:

I read the section about “over the counter ant-acid medication”.  Does that include Zantac and Tums?  The prescription pills give me a stomach ache.  Teri V.

My response was:

Yes – Zantac and Tums can be used for over the counter ant-acid medication, but be sure to let your Dr. know you have difficulty taking the prescription medication, there may be other options available.

The email jogged my memory about one of the more bizarre things that happened while writing ‘The Journey Through Cancer’.

Betty had found Zantac to be effective in mitigating some of the side effects from the treatments. Wishing to give credit where credit is due, I contacted Zantac asking permission  to use their name in the book. The answer was a resounding “NO”. OK… their name is not in the book!


What a great surprise!

It was a delight to find this in my email from Deacon Ed Close of St. Paul Catholic Church.


Happy Labor Day, Jim! I wanted to let you know that I finally finished reading the cancer journey weight-loss book. Thanks for the gift of the book and thanks for the little nudge you gave me to read it as you were speaking with Fr. Dennis this weekend.

I found it both good and interesting. Although I learned a few things medically, the book wasn’t particular technical – nor was that your intent. A few themes resonated more than others:

– The inevitability of change and the need to accept it.
– The “team” approach to addressing a cancer diagnosis and care
– An appreciation for prayer
– The need to question and fully understand doctors on diagnosis, procedures, treatment, strategy, etc.

I’m glad you were able to position yourself to be such an effective
advocate for Betty.

Thank you again for sharing. With His Peace, Ed

Deacon Ed Close
St. Paul Catholic Church
Damascus, MD.

Excerpt from Chapter 7 – “The Conclusion, Not the End”

The Journey Through Cancer: How to Lose 25 lbs. Without Diet or Exercise, and Be Cancer Free in 8 Months | Jim Serritella

Excerpt from Chapter 7 – “The Conclusion, Not the End”:

The goal was to be cancer-free. We have met the goal—at a price.
Time has to be paid to the keeper, for the last two chemo
treatements were extensive and drawn out due to the additional UTI
problems. The recovery time has been extended to an unknown
date. Actually, some days are reasonably OK, but then some days are
a killer and the right underarm chest pain is prolonged for the day.
More Tylenol or prescribed pain medication is taken as needed. A
chest operation requires several muscles to be sliced to provide
space to remove a lung mass and lobe; ribs must be separated for
space and access. The body must heal and recover from this procedure
in due time.

Excerpt from Chapter 6 – “The Updates”

The Journey Through Cancer: How to Lose 25 lbs. Without Diet or Exercise, and Be Cancer Free in 8 Months | Jim Serritella

Excerpt from Chapter 6 – “The Updates”:

This chapter of The Journey includes the status reports of my
wife’s condition as she passed various stages. Mention is made
to the evolution of change, as presented earlier, and the different
stages. CHANGE HAPPENS. Expect it, accept it, go with it, and be
ready for the next level of change.

Initially, the updates were sent to a small group of friends and associates.
By the time Update 5 came out, it had become a small e-mail
blast to more than a hundred people. My wife’s condition was of great
concern to all. There are nine update messages in all. I’ve included the
updates to guide you through a similar format or style if you care to
replicate an update to your friends and acquaintances. I have include a
brief comment for you after each update message.