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Indianapolis pastor battling leukemia looking for bone marrow match

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Posted at 8:57 PM, Dec 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-19 17:34:36-05

INDIANAPOLIS — As he prepares for his seventh round of chemotherapy to treat leukemia, Pastor Arvery J. Bush is looking for a match.

Pastor Bush, who was diagnosed in July, is preparing to undergo his seventh round of chemotherapy.

"In my life, I have to walk by faith and not by sight," Pastor Bush said.

That used to be the church motto at Christian Faith Missionary Baptist Church, but now those words have taken on a life of their own for Pastor Bush.

"If I go by what I see, I would have given up a long time ago. I would have thrown in the towel," Pastor Bush said.

Pastor Bush's life has been a journey of twists and turns ever since he was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia five months ago.

"They told me I had a chromosome called Philadelphia Chromosome," he said. "One out of five have it, I just happened to be one of those ones."

Due to the genetic abnormality, there's a chance the cancer will keep coming back without a bone marrow transplant. Friendship Missionary Baptist Church will hold a bone marrow registry drive from 2-5 p.m. Sunday. People can also register online by going to use page on Be The Match's website or by texting PastorBush to 61474.

"I have had some days that I just start crying because I want to live," Pastor Bush said.

Pastor Bush is set to start his seventh round of chemotherapy two days before Christmas, but he said he is not giving up on the possibility of a Christmas miracle.

It's likely the cure for his cancer will be found in someone with a similar DNA make-up, meaning someone of African-American descent. The only problem is African-Americans only make up a small portion of the bone marrow registry.

"I keep my faith and hope and trust in God knowing that one day, I'll be back," Pastor Bush said. "I'm coming back. I'll be in the pulpit preaching."

It's a fight he is determined to win.

"What we have been hoping and praying for all along is that God would find us a donor and that we would be healed. We get back to our normal life," he said.

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