Todd's Latest Health Update (Dec. 19, 2011)

Hello, my friends.

Merry Christmas to you! Tomorrow morning I'll fly to Boston for a two-week stay with family and friends. Oh, have I been looking forward to this!

But I wanted to get a note out to you before I travel. Below is a quick update on my health and treatment plans, as well as the latest news regarding my new recording project.

The Lord be with you! And may you enjoy a very special and meaningful Christmastime.

Cancer Treatment

In November I received the last of several more rounds of chemotherapy. And last week I traveled to the N.I.H. in Bethesda, MD, to undergo some tests to determine the effectiveness of these treatments. Regretfully, it appears that my cancer has developed a resistance to chemo. The tests showed an increase in tumor mass, and a possible spreading to my lungs. (Two very small, likely cancerous spots were found there.)

Also disappointing is that while we had hoped, by way of this additional chemotherapy, to diminish tumor mass to a point where another surgery could be performed, due to the extent of disease in my abdomen I am not a candidate for surgery at this time.

We are considering some experimental treatments being offered by the N.I.H., and I will keep you posted should we move forward with any of these.

I am grateful for the help that surgery and chemotherapy have been over the last couple of years. But my ultimate hope has never been in these treatments. And, happily, now that these have been removed as treatment options, I can more fully and effectively direct my hope to where it truly belongs: the wisdom, goodness, and power of the sovereign Lord.

If he chooses to heal me, he can. "Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father" (Matt. 10:29). And if he chooses not to heal me, I trust he will do so for reasons both infinitely wise and profoundly good, beyond my capacity to understand. For "we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28).

Oh, the comfort of God's Word in times of suffering! And the faith that comes through hearing it.

Many of you have written to ask about our progress on the new CD. Thank you for your interest, and for your kind words of encouragement! Your contact has been a real source of joy to me.

These recent months of chemo have been very difficult. Extreme fatigue and nearly ever-present nausea have made it tough to get much work done. As a result, we have been forced to slow down production on the new CD. Even so, I expect to have the finished product in hand by early spring, God willing.

And I still hope, as my health allows, to celebrate the new CD with concerts throughout New England and elsewhere. I will keep you posted on these plans!

Todd's Latest Health Update (June 2011)

Hello, my friends.

This update is long overdue! Thank you for your continued faithfulness in prayer on my behalf. Your friendship is precious to me.

Below is the latest news regarding my cancer treatment and my music.

Cancer Treatment

I've had five chemotherapy treatments so far. My sixth (and final) one is tomorrow, June 21st. We've also done two CT scans along the way, to monitor our progress. The first scan, done April 18th, showed about a twenty percent reduction in tumor. The second scan, done May 28th, showed no change at all. We'll follow up this final chemo treatment with a third CT scan sometime in mid July, then plot a course for further treatment from there.

Our next step may be another surgery. My surgeon will decide whether or not to operate based on how much tumor remains after my final chemo treatment. Too much disease will make surgery impossible. So please pray the Lord's mercy and blessing over this final round of chemotherapy.

I remain able to eat small amounts of food throughout the day, and continue to receive food intravenously via a twelve-hour infusion each night. (This intravenous food is called "Total Parenteral Nutrition," or TPN.) So I've put on a good deal of weight over the last few months, and my energy level is up.

The Lord is faithful! I am grateful for the substantial measure of physical healing he's given me, and, more importantly, for the faith that he continues to build and strengthen within me.

"I love you, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer" (Psalm 18:1-2).

Thankfully, I have been able to do some recording between chemotherapy treatments. And we've made substantial progress on what will hopefully be another full length CD by this fall. Above is a picture of Paul Buono (my producer) and me in the studio, taken a couple of weeks back. Don't we look happy? We are. This project is coming along!

A letter from Todd (Tours, Treatment and Thanks) (Oct. 2, 2010)

Hello, my friends.

I've been meaning to write for quite some time! Sorry for being so out of touch.

I returned home today from a visit with my doctors at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD. They performed a CT scan yesterday morning. That bit of cancer in my lower pelvis, which they've been watching very carefully since my surgery in February of 2009, remains. And there has been a recurrence of disease around my liver.

So the time has come for another surgery. We discussed operating as early as November. But, because of the slow rate of advancement my cancer has demonstrated over the last eighteen months, my surgeon assures me that we can safely wait until after the holidays, if that is what I'd prefer. So I have chosen to postpone surgery until the second week of January. We will then follow up with a number of chemotherapy cycles.

I remain deeply grateful to the Lord for his grace towards me over this last year and a half! And I wholeheartedly trust his help for the future.

Please remember me in prayer over the coming months. I will keep you updated on any changes. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me personally. I love hearing from you!

"The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped" (Psalm 28:7).

Grace be with you,

Download Todd's new single, "Lord of the Valley"
A full-band recording of Todd’s song, “Lord of the Valley,” is now available for download at CD Baby! Todd wrote this song in 2009, while undergoing cancer treatment, as a simple reminder to himself of the strong and steady faithfulness of the Lord.
Click here to download this brand new recording for only $0.99! (Read the lyrics here.)

Studio Work Continues
Todd and producer Paul Buono are putting the finishing touches on a full band recording of Todd’s song “Lord of the Valley.” (Read the lyrics here.) Be watching for release of this recording as a digital download in January 2010!

Continued Good News Regarding Todd’s Cancer (Nov. 2009)
Todd’s latest CT Scan (November 20th) showed, as his surgeon put it, “no evidence of disease.” Praise God for his almighty power and his tender mercy! And please remember Todd in prayer over the coming months as his doctors will be watching very closely for any recurrence of cancer.

Amazing News Regarding Todd's Cancer (Oct. 16, 2009)
Todd sent this message on Tuesday, Oct. 13: "I received some very good news this morning! My second surgery has been postponed indefinitely. While this morning's CT scan did reveal the smallest bit of residual cancer in my lower pelvis, it is of such little concern to my doctors that at this point surgery no longer seems necessary. In fact, the abnormality observed is so small that it's hard to know for sure whether or not it's even cancer." (Read the entire letter here)

Pilgrims Here Now Available Online (Sept. 22, 2009)
The new album by Todd MacDonald contains 11 songs written by Todd, featuring his deft acoustic guitar and one of the most penetrating tenor vocals in all of contemporary Christian music. Pilgrims Here is now available online at CD Baby. Digital downloads are also available at iTunes. Spread the word! (Learn More about Pilgrims Here)

Todd Returns to the Studio (Sept. 20, 2009)
Todd has reunited with producer Paul Buono to begin work on his second album (yet to be titled). They have already recorded basic tracks for two new songs written out of Todd’s battle with cancer: “Lord of the Valley,” and “Don’t Cry for Me.” Read the lyrics here.

Todd’s Cancer Treatment Continues (Sept. 16, 2009)
Todd will return to the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD, for a second surgery on October 14th, 2009. Please remember him in prayer! Contact Todd via the website.

Appearances by Todd on Other Albums (Sept. 16, 2009)

Todd sings the hymn, “Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken,” on the electronica album, “Hymnotica” (released in August of 2008 by “Go Global Records”). Hear samples from the album or buy a copy at Barnes and Noble online.

Todd also contributes vocals and guitar work on the Meme Stephens album, “Believe” (released in 2007). And this album contains Meme’s version of one of Todd’s songs, “Rejoice.” It’s available for purchase at Meme’s website.