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Should parents be punished because they believe in the healing power of prayer?

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Dale & Leilani Neumann’s daughter, Madeline Kara Neumann, 11, died from untreated diabetes on March 23, 2008, the authorities said. When the girl became ill and could no longer walk or talk, her parents prayed for her instead of taking her to a doctor, prosecutors said.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court is hearing the case of parents who prayed for their diabetic daughter instead of getting medical help.

Dale and Leilani Neumann were convicted of reckless homicide in 2009 after their 11-year-old daughter died from juvenile diabetes. Now the couple is asking the state supreme court to overturn their convictions.

They say they believed prayer would heal her and that if they took her to a doctor that would be “taking the glory away from God.”

Faith healing is protected under Wisconsin state law and under Louisiana law too, but prosecutors say that law does not apply in this case, because of the severity of the child’s illness.

Our Food for Thought Question: Should parents be punished if they deny a dying child medicine because they believe in the healing power of prayer?