Class relocates Sunday school to include young girl recovering from leukemia

Posted at 9:27 PM, Nov 17, 2013
and last updated 2013-11-17 23:27:51-05

COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS, Utah -- Children with cancer often struggle with isolation, and even after their recovery it can be difficult to feel normal again.

At least that's how one young girl in Cottonwood Heights felt, until her Sunday school class came up with an idea to make her feel included – they decided to have their weekly lesson at her house.

In February, doctors diagnosed Ashtyn with a rare form of leukemia, but she had faith she could beat it.

“Mind over matter… If you think you can beat it then you probably can,” Ashtyn said.

Her mom describes her recovery as miraculous, and now, after a bone marrow transplant, she's cancer free. But after spending six months in the hospital, she struggled to be social again.

“Sunday school is one thing that made her feel like a normal girl,” said her mom, Suzanne Hosenfeld Poulsen. “And remind her of who she was before. Having the Sunday school come was kind of a push for her to socialize with kids her age.”

While she recovers, Ashtyn tries to limit her exposure to germs, so, every Sunday, the kids in her Sunday school class walk from the church building to her house.

“I think it's really cool that they could come over because I haven't been to church for so long and I’ve been missing it a lot,” Ashtyn said.

“I like it because then she's not alone and left out,” Classmate Ali Wagstaff said.

Ashtyn can go back to church after the flu season, but in the meantime, the class doesn't mind keeping her company.