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Two men from Ghana were turned away by refugee centers in the U.S., forcing them to make the cold trek to Canada. That walk (yes, they walked) exposed them to frostbite, which caused them to lose all their fingers, but now they say God has answered their prayers through prosthetic replacements.

Seidu Mohammed and Razak Iyal, asylum seekers who haven’t been able to perform basic tasks for more than a year, now have prosthetic hands that help them function. That’s certainly great news, but it’s also important to understand that scientists and doctors are responsible for that, not God.

That’s not the way these two men see it, though. Mohammed, speaking on behalf of both men, hailed their new functioning hands as a testament to the power of prayer.

We’ve been praying for it and God has answered our prayers and things are getting better always every day,” said Mohammed Tuesday afternoon. Just hours earlier, he said, he had dropped change on the bus and couldn’t pick it up.

Tuesday was the first time he used his new prosthetic hands — called M-Fingers — which bend when a patient flexes his or her wrist. The moment brought tears to at least one person in the room.

To be clear, I hold no ill will again these men. Their ordeal sounds horrifying, and I can understand why they would look to religion and spirituality to get them through it. They can thank whomever they want for their recovery.

The rest of us, though, should understand that these marvels of medicine — while incredible — weren’t just handed to us on a silver platter from a divine deity. Scientists and doctors worked very hard to create these prosthetics.

Fortunately, these two admirable men actually did take the time to thank those who paid for their prosthetics, including the local hospital.

Both men said they wanted to thank Manitoba Health, which covered the cost of the prosthetic hands — about $10,000 a hand.

We are very, very grateful for everything that they do for us,” said Iyal.

Okay, so they’re not mentioning the scientists, but I’ll take it. I wish more religious people could do the same thing: Thank your god if you want, but don’t forget to recognize the people who worked to make your life better.

(Screenshot via CBC)

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