Al Warren

Al Warren (affectionately known as "Uncle Al" or "Krazy Al" by his good friends) is best known at the  Epicenter as simply "the idea man."

Pastor Al was born on Christmas Eve 1936 in Henrietta, Texas.

Al attended Grand Canyon College in Phoenix, Arizona. It was at First Baptist Church in Mesa, Arizona where he first pastored.

After college Al and his wife, Cathy, returned to California where he worked and attended Golden Gate Seminary.

They moved to Stockton,
California in 1969.

Al has always been a bi-vocational pastor, with an emphasis on starting new churches (five) and working with other churches (twenty-four). 

Al was an administrator at the University of Pacific for thirty years before retiring a few years ago.

Al loves working with computers, especially solving problems of those with little or no computer skills.


Cathy Warren

Catherine (Cathy) and Al Warren have been married for almost 50 years.

In fact, they will celebrate their 50th anniversary on June 11, 2005.

The opposite of Al, Cathy hates computers.  She believes they create chaos and have come straight from the devil.


Behind every good man there's a good womanDevoted wife to Krazy Al Warren for almost 50 years (celebrating

to hear a recent sermon by Al Warren, press play

  Rebuild the Walls (part one)

 UPDATE (August 8, 2005)

Al Warren is home again (and on the road again). A favorite teacher at First Baptist Church of Galt, California, Pastor Al Warren would love to have you join him on Sunday mornings at 9:45 for a great time of fellowship and Bible Study.

Click on the audio to hear his voice today. Better yet, come meet him in person this Sunday. Click here for a map.

  Rebuild the Walls (part two)

Warren Peace
...a vast epic centered on the life of Albert Warren and his wife, the enchanting Lady Catherine. 

Set in a mobile home park in the Central Valley of California at the turn of the (21st) century, the author explores life
with an uncanny depth of understanding of the human spirit.

The story was conceived as an example of  Warren's view that history proceeds inexorably to its own ends, with God ever providing peace to those who know Him. "A peace that passes all understanding."

Whilst so tendentious an approach to the philosophy of history is hard for some, the narrative intersperses humor, satire and personal introspection.  Dealing with severe back problems and prostate cancer only serves to give the author greater insight to the human spirit.

Warren Peace is in it's 78th printing, (the printer got stuck), and is currently read in over 40 nations!  Read the latest chapter

A Devotional thought by Al Warren CLICK HERE

      Alcatraz      photograph by Al Warren

(more photography by Al forthcoming)

September 15, 2005 - Good and Ah news today.

The Urologist called and my PSA, which is used to measure problems with the prostrate, is non-readable. That means that there is no activity in the prostate and that is very good news.

The Ah news is that I have to use the walker for 4 more weeks and also wear the girdle for the same amount of time.  I will start Physical Therapy next week.  I will go three times per week for one hour.  I still am not allowed to drive which is a problem in my mind. I cannot sit for over thirty to forty-five minutes at a time without moving. My son, Ken, has been so good to take me where I need to go.  He has even taken over part of the dinner preparation.  I might add that he is turning into almost as good of cook as his dad. 

My heart is sad today as the grandson of a friend of ours was killed on Sunday night.  He was a passenger in a car that was hit by a big rig.  He had just celebrated his twenty first birthday on Saturday.  His grandmother and grandfather lived next door to us for years.  His home life was very chaotic with each parent move out and back and drugs in the home.  Rose and Dave, the grandparents, has been the anchor in these kids live and Willie was always the peacemaker. When mom and dad were at their worst Willie would call Rose and Dave for help. It seems so strange that the good kid was taken in this way.  We have to trust that god knows best and that one day we will see Willie again.

It was only last week that another grandson of a friend was taken.  The Winns who helped with the restart of Clements lost a grandson in the same way.  He was also a passenger in a car where the driver went to sleep and crashed.  His parents were Russell and Kay and grandparents were Doug and Lorain.

I ask that you remember the Bensman and Winn families during this time of stress for both families.

August 6, 2005 - Talking Back

My Back Surgeon told me yesterday that I have to be very careful with my back as I still have a narrow spot in the spine.  Over this ordeal I've learned not to talk back to my Back Surgeon.  On the other hand, all he wants to do is talk back.

Turns out he could not open up this narrow spot like he did the other six areas.  So, no physical therapy for at least 6 weeks ...and no driving. 

I now have to wear a different girdle (dark blue satin with soft lace) when I sleep and another one (white naugahyde with tan burlap Velcro straps) during the day.  While I did not make it to Victor’s Secret for a fitting, both girdles seem to accentuate my best features. 

Back to the Back Doctor.  He ordered me a chair that lifts me to my feet instead of me having to push up. He wants to reduce the amount of stress on my back.  I wish he were half as concerned about the stress on my bank account!  I could not believe the price of the chair.  Cathy said it is my next birthday, anniversary, and Father's Day presents combined.  On the other hand ...a new chair and two new girdles ...not such a bad deal.

August 5, 2005 - Good News!

I'll be honest ...sometimes I wish My Urologist was Yourologist.  Anyway, my Urologist called and said that there was a problem with my latest Pee-S-A test.  Panic set in right away!  He said, "We could not get a reading between .001 and .009 which is rated as a 0.  So you must have done a good job of getting rid of the cancer, as we cannot get a reading."

That's the second time he has pulled this on me, and I bit both times.  I don't know about you, but I just can never get enough of funny Urologists.

I will still have chemo through November. I will be so glad when that is over and I can get over the hot flashes night sweats and other problems.

July 26, 2005 - At Home ...Just Visiting

I am home ...for a trial visit. I have to return to Valley Gardens by 6pm or my bed will disappear!  The last time I slept on the floor here at the house it took six paramedics to move me!

I am working on walking with a cane and have used it all day since getting home.  It is very hard to get up out of a soft recliner.  Then again, why would you?

God has worked a great work in the fact that I had major surgery on my back on July 8th, and I am now able to be at home and walking with a cane. 

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you that I am wearing a girdle.  I volunteered to let Lady Catherine wear a pair of my boxers (sort of a gesture of empathy), but she declined.  The girdle really improves my waist line.  Why didn't I discover this years ago?  Turns out that I look quite alluring in purple and black.  When I am feeling better I'm planning a trip to Victor's Secret to check out the new fall styles.  Seriously, I do not understand, how women of old, wore these things.  

I have a goal to be back at Church for the service at 10am on July 31st.  Hopefully, I'll soon be able to return to teaching my Sunday school class and resume other duties.  Please pray with me for this to happen. 

June 28,2005 - Please Pray

I fell on Monday trying to go up the stairs at my home.  Ken kept my head from going boom and for that I praise him. 

To make this quick, the doctors have determined that the Lower Lombard part of the spine is causing the problems.  If my white count is up to normal after the radiation then they will plan the surgery for next week.  As of now I am home bound. I want you to do the following things for me:

1. Pray for the doctors that they will make the right decisions.

2. Pray for my wife as she has to do basically all the taking care of me.

3. Remember me as I am not looking forward to being cut on and having to ware the turtle shell for 3 months.

I miss all of you.  Please do not write me an e-mail as I just cannot sit that long.  My phone works!

June 21, 2005 - There's No Place Like Home ...There's No Place Like Home ...

It has been a long time since May 1, and a lot has happened that I was not prepared for.  I became so weak in my legs I could not walk without a walker.  They still do not know after 6 weeks what has caused my hips to hurt so bad that it will not support my legs.  I was in two different hospitals in May and fell several time and in a rehab hospital for four weeks where I only fell once but I am still weak.

YEAH! I am home with a loving family to watch over me and give me good orders. 

I had special stairs made for my rear entrance to my house that will allow my arms to help support me to get in and out of the house.  Oh, the joy of Home Cooking!  I do not know what God has in mind for me and my life at this time.  A neurologist has run nerve conductive test and will try to see if he can put all the pieces together and find out what happened.  At this time he has been fighting with hospitals to get reports from the time of my stay.  It is funny how they are your records and they stall about sending them to a doctor.

While in the rehab center I was able to make friends with many of the Filipino R.N.’s and C.N.A.’s.  They called me father or preacher and I had a good relationship and they all came up to tell me that they wished me a good life as I left. I had a conference with several of them about what the meaning was in a traditional Filipino wedding ceremony. This is a story for another time.

I am going for 1½ hours of physical therapy Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I am not sure that it is doing much to help, but I cannot turn a chance to get stronger down anytime. Keep me in your prayers and I will write more as my strength and ability return.

If you have sent me e-mails and I have not answered be patience as I will get to them as this is the first thing I have set down and written.

May 1, 2005 - I Still Cannot Dance

It has been a bummer for the past week and the week-end.  The Chemo has started a fight with the joints of my lower back, hip and legs, and after five rounds Chemo is ahead on all of the scorecards!  I'm thinking about watching "Rocky" one more time, but the thought of seeing him run up those stairs in Philadelphia makes me grimace.

I had to sit for the Bible Study on Sunday and had to have a chauffer, (Cathy and her Mustang - not unlike the "Little Old Lady from Pasadena"), to get me to Church. (Have you ever tried to get out of one of a Mustang with bad legs?)

The pain is the worst that I have had with all of my treatments. I cannot walk until I stand for a few seconds and let my body and legs get in sync.  The doctor gave me some pain pills but they did nothing for the pain so I quit taking them (with doctor’s recommendation).  I have chemo until November so I want to get this part under control.

I have two more radiation treatments, today and tomorrow, YEH! Ken is going to take me this morning as I am having a hard time walking.  Hopefully he'll be driving the Hummer instead of Cathy's Mustang.

Cathy said she had been trying to slow me down for years, but not this way. I am going to try to see the doctor again this morning for my hip area. I walk like the old man on the 6 flags commercials ...but darn it all, I still cannot dance.

April 28, 2005 - Hanging in There

Oh what Pain!  I got up during the night on Monday and when I stood up, a wave of pain hit my hip and legs like I have never experienced before.  You know the doctors always ask you on a scale of 1-10 how is the pain, it was 30! 

From Monday through Wednesday I thought it was from my back surgery.  I was shuffling along like a 99 year-old man with bad knees.  (If you are old enough to remember Laugh In, picture Arte Johnson shuffling along, trying desperately to catch the lovely Ruth Buzzi).  

I found that getting up and sitting down were now procedures that required great finesse. It did not get any better, so I scheduled a meeting with my back doctor for today.  Naturally, they called and canceled it and rescheduled it for a week from now.  I'm sure the next seven days, stuck here in this chair, will fly by! 

I saw my Oncologist yesterday and she set me straight about the pain.  First, there is nothing that came be done about it and it will go away.  SOON I HOPE!  She said it is the change in my testosterone level from the chemo.  She said the pain can last three weeks, or it could stop tomorrow.  Ok, in that case, I choose tomorrow! 

I cannot take pain pills because of other problems, so as she said, “You will just have to suck it up and hang in there.”  I still scream every time Lady Catherine tries to get me up off my chair!  

It is a little better today as I can sit at the computer for a little time.  (The hard part was moving the computer into the bathroom!). 

You know, I could not have made it through this without friends that cared and prayed for me.  I'm told that Tuesday will be my last radiation, and that I should start to get some of my strength back in two or three weeks.  ...But the Chemo will go to November.  Dang it all!

Yet, with a PSA of “0” I should complain?

April 23, 2005 - It all Depends

Eleven days until I finish my radiation and I can hardly wait.  I am in my heaviest radiation and will have 9 more sessions.  It has caused my body to do away with some of the physical controls that on which we all depend

Note the obvious play on the word.  It will get worse during the next two weeks and then I hope the ability to be in control again will return slowly.  I am VERY TIRED.  It seems that I can never get enough rest.  The Urologist called today, (yes, on Saturday), and gave me some good news that my PSA was a ZERO.  I did not even know it could go that low!  He was very pleased and said he would have been happy with a .5.

The radiation is causing problems with my back and the pain is not easily controlled, as I cannot take regular pain reliever.  When I get down on my knees I have to pray to get back up.  Sometimes I just pray more so I will not have to try to get up.  You can just call me "Old Camel Knees"

God has been so good, with all that has been going on in my life, he has provided preachers for almost every service at the Epicenter through July while pastorob is on sabbatical leave.  Next week we should complete the list. Watch the Epicenter for information on each Sunday.  We are also sending cards out to announce our speakers for the following two weeks.  If you would like to receive a card, write and you will be added to our mailing list.

It was so great hearing the good news from Robin McCall.

April 15, 2005 - The Tax Man Cometh!

Today I went in to have new tattoos.  My largest one is now three by four like a cross with a circle in the area where the cross meets.  Now isn’t that cool for a 68 year-old pastor?  I received these as I started my three weeks of intensive radiation.

They are now using six radiation points instead of four.  They have tightened the beam and increased the amount of radiation.  I wonder if these six points will glow or if the tattoos are going to become like the face of a good watch at night. 

Seriously, this is my hardest three weeks so please hold me up in prayer.  I pray that I will have God’s grace to take it one day at a time and give God the glory for being alive. 

Do you realize when I was in school,  prostate cancer was a death sentence? 

I believe that God led me to the program that I am now in and that He wants me to trust my doctors as they strive to cure me.

I am looking forward to getting some good medicine from Dr. Cliff Hoff on Sunday.  He'll be preaching and we're expecting to see God bring the harvest.  Pray that God will touch lives. I urge you to bring those who need salvation and a Church home to hear this man of God. 

April 1, 2005 - No Foolin'

What a shock my Urologist  gave me (now there is an interesting picture!) today. You know I am and old man and shock is not good for my constitution ...or any other part of my anatomy the urologist might be interested in!  He told me that I will have to continue to take the chemo for six months after I finish with the radiation! (Sadly, this is no April Fool's joke).

That means that I will get a Christmas present, I will not have to take the chemo in December.

Hey, there is an upside; he told me that I should loose ten to fifteen pounds per month if I keep my calories down to around two thousand per day.  ("Lady Catherine, hold that banana split I asked you for., well, on second thought, let's share it.")

My spirits are now down a little but I'm looking forward to the future.  God has a plan for the rest of my life and I want to serve him.  Our Church is going to need strong people during the next four months and I pray that I will be up to the task and the confidence that Pastor Rob has placed in me.  We each need to reach out and hold on to one another. 

It reminds me of the story of the kids that the scout leader asked to walk on the railroad tracks without falling off.  One after another they tried to balance on the track, but one by one they all fell off.  Finally, two boys held hands while they each stood on a track.  The two boys reached across and joining arms walked down the tracks.  They (together) did what no one else could do by holding on to each other.  So hold on to each other ...and me to. 

March 30, 2005

Editor's note: As Pastor Al has been reporting, his strength has been sapped by the chemo treatments.  Recently, a friend of Al's, Beverly, visited Warren Peaceland and offered up a personal story about dealing with cancer.  We thought it this would be a good time to share the story.  Look for Al to be checking in again very soon.

    A Message from Beverly 

March 26, 2005

Well I have finished two weeks of radiation - only six more weeks to go.

Yes, the Oncologist was right, I am tired! Yet life and God’s work goes on.  Monday, I have my last chemo treatment, which will last a month.  Yea!

It is now Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and I still have my sweats on.  I've been looking at the treadmill, mesmerized,  since 8:00 a.m.  Personally, I recommend that any time you are looking at exercise equipment, you should wear sweats.  Just be very careful not to get any moisture on them!  Lady Catherine says I'm just being lazy, but I don't see her wearing sweats. Hah!  I think I deserve it. 

I have a wedding this afternoon at the River mill at 4:30 p.m.  It's a very cute couple and they are very much in love.  I think it would be cool if they got married in their sweats.  At least that way, they would look like the pastor who's marrying them.

Tomorrow is Easter and a friend, Tom Mogan, says that I am old enough to hide my own eggs.  He's probably right.  Now, if I can just remember where I hid that chicken! 

We must remember that Easter is not about eggs but about the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ.  It is my trust and hope in Him that keeps me going. When it gets kinda dark in my life, I turn to His light and it all becomes better.

March 18, 2005

It has been one week since I started my radiation.  I have chemo that will last until the end of April but my last treatment will be March 25. 

I had my second check-up with the oncologist yesterday and she was very encouraging telling me that it was going great ...BUT (Now I don't know about you, but it's been my experience that when I hear the word "but," I probably don't want to hear the words that follow) then she starting telling me by next Wednesday I should feel weaker.  Can you be much weaker?

Then the last two weeks of April and the first week of May they will increase the radiation to six points (what, no extra point after the touchdown??) and increase the dosage.  She said this will be the weakest point.  Oh, thanks for that good news.

Again I ask, it can get weaker yet????

She said my recovery to my “normal self,” (an assumption on her part??) will take about 6 months. That is, of course, if I do not have any of the side effects from the radiation. Ugh! Don’t even go there. 

She told me the worst of the side effects and I promptly forgot them because I am not going to have them!  God, Lady Catherine, a group of praying Church members (I only refer to them as "serfs" when they misbehave) and I, have decided that they are not going to happen. 

Just think, by Christmas I should be back to my Bah, Hum Bug self. 

March 08, 2005

I met with my oncologist this morning and I feel that she was honest and upfront with me on what to expect during the next 8 weeks.  She said that after two weeks I would start to feel weaker and more fatigued than now.  If this keeps up then I am going to have to have a footman to open the doors for me.

My blood count will drop, which will increase the risk of infection, but they will track it weekly and, if needed, take action.  There will be a permanent bone density loss in the pelvic area.  This can lead to fractures or softening of the bone.  The radiation can cause scaring on the internal passages of the body which could result at the worst case in lost of some functions. 

To think  ...a few months ago I was stressing over what cat food was the best.  (Turns out my favorite was "Fancy Feast with Gourmet Gravy," which Lady Catherine also likes ...though she prefers hers over rice). 

Well, there is some good news.  I now have three new tattoos!  How many 68 year-old pastors can say that?  (The body piercings remain a confidential matter between Lady Catherine and I).  To clarify, the "tattoos" are used as check points when setting up the machine.

My oncologist feels that we will work together and beat this prostate cancer.  Sounds good to me, just having difficulty determining which days the doc wants to take my chemo treatments!

I have my first radiation on Thursday at 1pm.  I still have one more chemo at the end of March and that is something to look forward to; not the chemo treatment itself, but the fact that it is the last one.

I feel that your prayers and God’s grace will see me through this!  Thank you to all those who are praying for me and my family!

There is a lot on my plate during the next few weeks.  We are starting a new Bible Study at 9:45 Sunday morning March 13th.titled, “The Church.”  I hope to finish developing the next series of lessons in April so that our class will be ready start on them the first of May.

We have a GOOD Bible Study Group and would like to invite you to join us if you are ever in the shadow of the epicenter.  If you are not in Galt, CA, I will be happy to send you an Adobe Acrobat copy of the pupil’s book that we are using for the next 6 to 8 weeks.  If you have question about the lessons you may e-mail me and I will reply as I am able to do so, or will refer them to one of my assistant teachers.  I might add the time I finish with the radiation I will also have completed six weddings and one baby dedication.

March 07, 2005

Editor's Note:  While Lady Catherine remains in virtual seclusion (protected as she is, by the moat that surrounds her easy chair in the castle, mobile home), her sister, Lady Linda, has decided to pay a visit.  Her views on computers are ...well, see for yourself.  But clearly, the gauntlet has been thrown down!

Poor Sis (Lady Catherine),

It is a shame that such an articulate woman is buffaloed (is that the right spelling?) by a machine.  Remember,     Computers are our friends.  Now, say that over and over.  Let yourself become one with the computer.  He, he. 

After all, if you were more involved with the computer, I would not have to wait for Al to make a blog page to write to you.  Why, we could communicate daily, rather than wait for Al and me to be on the computer at the same time to instant message with you in the background. LOL

Love you Sis, come into the 21st century with us.  It is a nice place.  We can go skipping down the road of computer bliss together.  Besides, you have a lot to say and what better place to say it than on the internet. 

Love you a bunch,

Lady Linda

March 06, 2005

Today has been a downer to say the least.  It is afternoon and I still have not gotten dressed. I know what you are thinking ...slacker.  No, I have just lost my get up and go.  I have looked everywhere for it but it seems to be lost. The chemo has really taken a lot out of me and today seems the worst.

Tuesday I meet with the oncologist (Oncologists are physicians who study, diagnose, and treat cancerous tumors), and will set up the times for the radiation.  I have been given a glass of iodine solution that I have to mix with fruit juice (just so I can get it down) and drink it before going in.  Wow, I could of had a V8!  

They will use a scan to set the points of radiation ...or so I think.  I want to ask her if there is not something that will give me back some zip.  Note I did not say zippidy do da.

On a very serious note, I have lost a very good friend this week but I know that she is in a much better place.  We love you Vida!


February 28, 2005

They say the way your Monday goes so goes the rest of the week I pray not!

I had an epidural at 10:30 a.m..  I might add that I had to wait for an hour for the procedure.  They could not find a blood vein so they did it with a local.  No problem and it did not hurt ...Much!

Then I went for my chemo and arrived early and got right in and had the procedure and got home about 2pm.  Went to sleep and slept until 4:30 and felt that I had not slept at all.  It was all I could do to keep my eyes open until we went to bed.  Then I could not get to sleep.  Sheesh!!

About 2:30 a.m. I gave up watching  infomercials and went to sleep in my chair.  By the way, if you don't normally stay up late but would like to know more about the Bun & Thigh Rocker, the Turbo Cooker, Steam Buggy, the Thuderstick Pro Mixer, or Epil-Stop and Spray, please don't hesitate to e-mail me.

I finally went back to bed at 5 a.m..  It is now 2 p.m. and I am finally going to take a bath and get dressed.  Seems my Herculean strength got up and went! 

Oh, before I forget, the next time I write I will be well on my way to being a millionaire (assuming the home course in real estate arrives).  Just think how I will be able to help the children in Liberia!

February 22, 2005  

Last week, the doctor had me take a new PSA test (Prostate-Specific Antigen is a protein produced by the cells of the prostate gland.  The PSA test is used to measure the level of PSA in the blood).

He called last night after 7:30pm on a holiday if you can believe that!  (From now on he will be known as "Doc Holiday"). 

He said my PSA was down to .67 the chemo was working. 

I will still have to take the next two sessions of chemo and the two months of radiation but that was good news. 

February 21, 2005

   This week I went to the Spine Doctor after my MRI's and he said that I had problems with L-4 and 5 vertebrae.   For those unfamiliar, the L stands for lumbar, the lower portion of the spine.  Here, check it out.

These little rascals are putting pressure on the spine that is causing my left foot and ankle to feel numb.  It is also what is causing the pain in the lower back.  Believe me, I wouldn't wish this on any of you.  Here's a short article about simple exercises you can do to help avoid back problems.  These exercises can be done by 90 year-olds!

The doctor is doing another Epidural on the 29th AND I get my third chemo shot on that day as well.  On top of all that I have been having severe pain especially when driving or when I get up in the morning in my left shoulder. 

I sleep on my left side and I thought that was doing it but he said I have band of arthritis that is rubbing the rotator cup area.  He gave me a shot of something today to relieve the pain for a while.  He said it can be fixed with an arthroscopy surgery after I finish with my radiation.  

If it is not one thing then it is two of something else. You know I thought that I am was going to be tested like Job but I don’t have any fields, daughters, donkeys, sheep, camels, servants, and my wife (see right hand column for more details) is stronger of faith than Job’s was. 

...So I guess it is just my clean living that is causing all this STUFF!  If you believe that I have an island called Manhattan I would like to sell you.

February 14, 2005  

  This week (that was to have been a week of rest) OH WELL.  I have to have another MRI of my back and my shoulder.  The epidural went into the wrong place and the pain is still in my lower back from the fall.  The doctor felt that he needed another view to make sure where to place the next try. While I was there I mentioned that my shoulder was hurting and after checking it he thought that I had torn my rotator cup.  You see that is why I am Krazy Al it just never stops.

    I have to go see the Doctor and find the results on Thursday. I had my second Chemo last week and it is making me tired but the counter-meds will not take effect until the end of the week so still groggy.

  Friends that care is a major help to anyone going through something like this.  If you have friend with cancer don’t hold back because they might feel bad but call and go because this is what they need.  I know, as my Bible Study class sends e-mails, FUNNY cards and phones often, this keeps my spirits up. I just finished the next six lessons for my class and we are going to study “The Church and What it Means In My Life.”

February 2, 2005

I have been, using and old phase, “feeling kinda low.” I had developed a spot on my leg that kept growing and decided to go to the Doctor to have it checked out.  He took on look and said, “Go see a dermatologist.” Then he asks how I was doing.  Told him “kinda low” and he said that the Chemo was affecting my body in so many ways that was the reason.  He said it would affect my sleep and my ability to focus.  He said there were many other side effects such as sight and ability to reason.  So see now I have a solution when I make dumb mistakes.  It’s not my fault but the Chemo’s fault.  I have been trying to find something I could blame my mistakes on all my life.  He did give me a capsule to take each day to help overcome these effects but REMEMBER it take two to three weeks to take effect.  So ...don’t blame any mistakes on me for at least three weeks.

January 31, 2005

They gave me my second Chemo shot today.  In two week from now I have to go an have test make to make sure the Chemo is containing the cancer.  I hate needles like a passion.  The only place they can normally find a vein is in the back of the hand.  I truly believe that my veins go on vacation when they see a needle. 

January 21, 2005

   Today I found out that the Chemo meds I was given were adding to the pain in my back.  They cause pain in the bones and also spinal cord compression.

   I will have an epidural on Monday. The Urologist has spoken to my spine doctor and he is supposed to add another med to the procedure on Monday (which should counteract these problems). 

   Just one thought that is a slang expression
           from the late 50’s:    “OH PAIN.

   That was one of the slang expressions that we used along with “COTTON PICKER.” When I was growing up we had slang words that we used and they were never as vulgar as the language our adults and young people speak today. 

   After my twelfth year I was always in Church.  Most of the kids that I associated with were from Church.  Maybe I just never heard language that I am hearing today (even from Church kids).  Oh, well I am a Senior.

Side note: After our marriage, in Arizona, a group of us were sitting around a table at Grand Canyon College, now Grand Canyon University, and the term 'cotton picker' came up in the conversation.

   Cathy walked out into a field of cotton that surrounded the college and picked a handful of cotton. She exclaimed,
            “Now you can call me a Cotton Picker!” 

   We went back to visit the college several years ago and I drove by the college.  No cotton fields...only buildings.  When I went to school there, there was only five hundred students now they have over six thousand.  See, I told you I was a Senior.

January 19, 2005

I read Eva's journal entry from 01.17.05 and was reminded of my own childhood (when I was a loner). I wrote a letter to this young mother: CLICK HERE

January 12, 2005 - "Help I've Fallen and I Can't Get Up"

I have a new-found respect for the law of gravity.  Especially after standing in a chair to reach a light bulb and then for some reason I gravity brought me back to the floor flat on my back. 

Something like this

Now I have a back ache AND a head ache.  I don’t understand what gravity has against me. 

The doctor says that gravity damaged my back again and sooner or later I am going to have to have it fixed.  On the 24th I will have an epidural.  Cathy and I are hoping for a little boy and the epidural will hurry the process along.  

Just kidding.  My epidural is a steroid injection that is administered in non-surgical situations and will help to relieve the painful blow that gravity dealt me. 

I'd write more, but the lighting is really bad.

December 31, 2004

It has been a bittersweet week for me.  Jerry Orbach, the famous New York actor who starred in “Law and Order” was diagnosed with prostate cancer (a week after I was).

He died
on Wednesday. If you want to read his story go to As I read the article, I felt like: “It could be ME.” It really put me in a down mood and not hearing from the doctor brought the thoughts "Why the wait?"

Then Rose called from the Urologist and told me to come in and get my first shot. It is a shot that lowers the testosterone levels which causes the prostate to shrink.  The material given says it is indicated for the treatment of advanced carcinoma of the prostate.  Isn’t that a mouthful?  It is given eight weeks prior to radiation and eight weeks during radiation.

The medication is mixed in Sacramento and brought by messenger to Stockton and has to be given within four hours of preparation.  I have my appointments for the next shot on January 30th.  It is a very big and long needle and it is given in the belly area. The nurse made a comment that she was giving this one in the western area and the next would be in the east.  Do you think that she was referring to my size, Nah! After reading the material the nurse gave me it seems like I am in for some problems that many women have gone through, hot flashes, sweating at night, and back aches.  Oh well, it has to be done.

I feel that if I had not continued my PSA test and had a good doctor I could have been where Jerry Orbach was.  I urge all men over 50 to insist that their doctors give them the PSA test.  Over 6 years my doctor had followed my test and each year they had gone up. This is what led to the diagnosis.

December 27, 2004

Here I sit two days after Christmas and I'm still waiting for the doctor to call.  Cathy will tell you I don’t wait very well.

I did not hear last Monday so I called the doctor on Tuesday.  He called on Tuesday night at 8:30 and told me that the nurse would call me the next day.  Guess what no call on Wednesday and Thursday so I decided to call on Friday.  Message on the phone was closed for Christmas Holidays.  Called at 9:30 this morning and was told the nurse would return my call as soon as she was through with a patient.  It is now 12:30pm and still no call.

Oh well, it is a mess outside and I am enjoying the warm house!

Pastor Al

40 Days of Radiation

December 20, 2004
Here I sit waiting by the phone for the doctor to call,  Well, the heck with it, he can leave a message.

On this Monday morning I am going to the gym.  I have to get my strength up for Christmas dinner.

More when I check my messages.

December 19, 2004 (Beginning Week One)
I met with the onacoligist, the onicolagist, the onnocolegist the doctor, expecting to start radiation.  I was very unsure of what was in store and so I prepared myself for the worst.  Dr. Hart was understanding and even seemed to enjoy my krazy sense of humor.  After her exam (there are many surprises in this ordeal), she informed me that the area was too large for the type of radiation planned.  She wants to use an anti-hormone series of shots for the next two months and then during the first four weeks of radiation.

She will not do this part of the procedure.  I will be seen by my urologist (I think he has a Pee-H-Dee) in his office until March.

In March I will start radiation every day except Saturday and Sunday.  The doctors informed me that cancers do not grow on the week-ends!  Remember where you read that first.

I will receive radiation at four points for five weeks.  Following that, the doses will increase and be administered at six points for the next three weeks.

Interesting to note that with the new Liner Acceleration Particle Beam Generator they will be using, (I'm half-expecting to see Captain Kirk suddenly appear when they start the thing up), I will not lose my hair.  Yea, like that was a problem!

Thinking ahead (at the possibility of adding some hair) I asked about the Rogaine Particle Accelerator machine and learned it's still in development.

December 14, 2004
I have learned that my treatment will consist of a series of shots for two months and then 40 days of radiation.

In my particular case, they found that the prostate was too large to radiate properly so they are using anti-testosterone drugs before they start the radiation.

I asked the doctor if the cancer could spread during these two months and was assured that the drugs would not only shrink the prostate but contain the cancer as well.

I am planning to try out for the tenor section in our choir right as soon as the treatments are completed!

December 12, 2004
God is so good that they (the doctors) caught my prostate cancer when they did and that there is treatment. 

Praise His Name.

December 10, 2004
I met with the doctor this afternoon and got the news that my prostate cancer has advanced to the point that he wants me to start 8 weeks of radiation starting December 16.

One nice thing is that apparently cancer doesn't grow on Saturday and Sunday.  Evidently I have the "week-day only" variety.

As a pastor of many years, I realize that how we live teaches more than what we preach.  I have begun a new journey, one that I know God will use to help and encourage others.

I recently learned that I have cancer.  It is treatable and it is my desire to journal this experience...

write me: Cathy Warren

"Al Warren is the smartest man I have ever met."
--Cathy Warren, 1996


   Cathy Warr
en, B.A. (before Al)                                                

   "...let's leave Cathy out?"

1 Cor. 14:33
For God is not the author of confusion.                                      NKJ

1 Cor. 14:33 
For God is not the God of confusion but of peace.          RSV

1 Cor. 14:33  For God is not a God of
                  tumult, but of peace.

    God is not a God of Confusion but of Peace.  Since God does not cause confusion or disorder, you know who does, Satan himself.  

    There is definitely no peace or harmony around here when Al becomes confused over a problem he has with a computer.  Whether it’s his own created problem or he’s helping someone else find out why the ______ _______  isn’t working.

    I wonder why someone really intelligent would put themselves into a situation which would cause them to spend hours some time days sitting in the same position-becoming grumpy and definitely not showing God’s love through their actions.

    So tell me isn’t the devil the cause of chaos and confusion in a person’s life?

                    -- Cathy Warren, 2004



Cathy collects Santa Claus figures.

Cathy loves
kittens and cats.

Cathy was once 'locked in a room'
with a computer and required to input over 7,000 entries on a database.

Cathy is our 'resident expert' on all things regarding Al Warren, his life history, his recent experiences, and supplemental information to enhance his recollection of events.

   So, make sure you always check
        this column if you want 'the facts.'

   The Little Train that Could

Hi Pastor Al,

Now I know why I love you so much - your wonderful sense of humor.  I laugh thru my tears. Your description of leg and toe pains describes my acute problems with my back.  I'll try to describe it this way.

You see I have this "little train that could" (referring to a nursery story I read to my children).  My MRI's and doctors call it Cervical Spinal Stenosis, and for two years it has been going from the train station (my lower back) down the platform (my leg) to the turn-around (my toes) where it slows  ...sometimes.  The weight of it doing this has numbed my toes so much that needles no longer work there, ...not that I particularly like the needles!

Then this roaring engine decides to let off sparks (better known as red hot electrical discharges) as it enters my ankle and moves up the inner side of my leg.  It gets a surprise for me at my knee.  I guess it decided to make it part of the run back to the station, and decided to make it weaker. 

After a few of years of not doing anything to take care of this neurological damage because I was, at the same time, fighting cancer, the little train decides it would be fun to do the same thing to the other leg and foot.

Through it all, I begin experiencing some loss in my arms and pain in my hands. One sweet little train!  Boy, how often I wish it would run out of coal.  But my doctors all agree I need rest to build up my strength and immune system before my next operation.  Now, can I do that with this constant night companion that always seems to run right on schedule?

Well, that's the "rest of the story" as Paul Harvey would say.

My husband finally agreed to let me make an appointment for him with the doctor.  I can't nag him to go, but I did tell him he was too young to be so old. Enough said...

Well, now I see why God postponed the date for another operation for me. I needed to be there for my husband, especially during this transition period of how and what he eats.  This only serves to remind me that God works everything out for the good of those who love him.

I'm a believer in tears and prayers. There are many on my evening prayer list and you and Cathy are always two of them.

Yours in Christian Love, Beverly