A 9-year-old cancer patient's last wish will be granted, following a Facebook campaign
A little boy from Germany will be honored through a sculpture that stands to be placed aside his gravestone. 9-year-old Jens Pascal, of Dortmund, Germany, passed away in May, not before asking his mother to grant him a last wish.Jens long fought cancer, until a brain tumor got the best of him. A fan of German soccer team Borussia Dortmund, he wanted his final resting place to mirror his love for the sport.
“Mummy, when I die, I would like a gravestone with the club logo,” he told mother Nicole Schmidt, according to International Science Times.
The Catholic church of Maria Heimsuchung in Dortmund was contacted in order to obtain approval for the branding of the little boy's gravestone. Unfortunately, church administrators were not so keen to oblige, as including a soccer-related inscription on the boy's tomb was against their regulations. In fact, any non-Christian symbols were completely forbidden.
Jens' parents described the church's inflexibility on Facebook, and they received a lot of attention from Dortmund fans and soccer lovers from all across Germany.
Supporters started a Facebook page called “The Last Wish of Jens Pascal,” and practically spammed the church, outraged about their decision.
“I ask the Church not to be led by regulations, show us your heart!” one Facebook user asked.
As more than 140,000 people gathered on the social networking group, the church finally agreed to let the family mark the boy's passing, by allowing them to build a sculpture of a soccer ball next to the gravestone.
“It was never the intention of the church to stand in the way of the little boy's last wish. [...] It was about reconciling the interests of the Church community, the cemetery rules and the interests of the parents of the child who died,” church reps say, in their statement.