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Prayers from across the world for brave Josh's cancer battle

By Christopher Woodhouse

Published 18/08/2015

Joshua Martin
Joshua Martin
Message of support from Philippines

The Co Down teenager diagnosed with cancer last Christmas Eve is uniting Christians around the world in prayer for a miracle cure of his disease.

Joshua Martin (14) has been battling the disease for more than seven months and has just undergone a second week of radiotherapy at Belfast City Hospital.

The brave struggle of the Donaghadee lad has gained global awareness thanks to the social media campaign #PrayforJosh launched by his parents and Bangor Elim Church.

Christians as far afield as the Philippines have been praying for a miracle cure for the Bangor Grammar School pupil.

In one heart-warming video message, a group of children from the Asian island nation say they are praying for Joshua to "get well soon".

"Hi Josh, we are praying for you. God bless you and get well soon. God is your healer," says one of the children before they all wave a cheery goodbye.

What his parents Kim and Tim have described as a "horrific" year began on Christmas Eve 2014 when Joshua came down with a suspected case of appendicitis.

However, following a seven-hour operation it was discovered that Joshua had seven cancerous tumours throughout his abdomen.

His plight soon captured the hearts of people across the country and beyond as his parents and church worked to raise awareness of his condition.

A billboard advert by the side of the main Belfast to Bangor road earlier this year asked passing motorists to pray for Joshua.

Soon the teenager was getting messages of support from strangers everywhere, including golf star Sergio Garcia who tweeted: "Sending love and good vibes to Josh and his family #prayforjosh".

In a recent interview with the Belfast Telegraph his mother Kim described how it was "horrific" for her and husband Tim to watch their son suffer in agony while fighting against the disease.

"As a mum it's been horrific watching your child in pain," Kim said.

"I can't imagine anything worse than watching your child go through that. So knowing that people are carrying us through this means the world to us." She added: "Every small message gives us more hope - even from strangers.

"It has helped us more than I can say.

"They have been incredible through our darkest hour."

The Martin family have also called on people to pray for Joshua at 11am every day as he goes through further rounds of radiotherapy.

While they continue to hold out hope for a divine intervention in their son's case, the Martins have thanked the medical staff treating Joshua.

"We also thank God for the incredible team of radiotherapists at the City Hospital who are just amazing," said Kim in a Facebook post on Saturday.

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