Castaway Kid: Some May Find It Hard to Believe

Post a Comment » Written on June 27th, 2007     
Filed under: News
GREENSBORO, NC (June 27, 2007) – Rob Mitchell understands why people might disbelieve his recently published book, Castaway Kid, could possibly be a narrative of his life.

His mother abandoned him at Swedish Covenant Hospital in 1958, when he was three years old. He was placed as a “lifer” in the Covenant Children’s Home at Princeton, Illinois, where he lived for 14 years. During that time, his mentally ill mother tried to kidnap him when he was seven. He never met his father, who attempted suicide, but wound up brain damaged. His grandmother, who obviously loved him, would bring Mitchell home for visits, but always return him to the orphanage because she could not afford to care for him.

His life began to change when he was 17 and gave his life to Christ after being witnessed to by someone at Covenant Harbor Bible Camp and Retreat Center. He has since gone on to serve in Congo as a short-term missionary, become one of the country’s top financial advisors, and a major contributor over the years to the children’s home where he was raised.

Mitchell describes his book as a “narrative non-fiction that reads like a novel.” He knows people will be wary of the plot twists and characters, especially since the best-selling memoir A Million Little Pieces by James Frey proved to be a fake.

Rob Mitchell hopes his website “A Million Little Proofs” will convince people the story is true. The site includes official documents from his case file at the children’s home; psychiatric reports on him, his mother and father; letters from people involved – including a letter from the children’s home director, attesting to the story’s veracity; and recorded interviews.

Mitchell says that while growing up in the home, he was full of anger and bitterness. He now is thankful for the patience and care shown by the staff, although he thought little about it when he was a resident.

That anger and bitterness also prevented him from hearing the gospel, he says. He couldn’t relate to the traditional images of Jesus.

But he eventually discovered a truth to which he could relate: “He (Jesus) got betrayed by people he trusted. That Jesus I understood.”

Although few people share his experience of being raised in an orphanage, Mitchell says most people will relate to the issues touched on in the book: feeling unloved, dealing with anger and bitterness, feeling overwhelmed, as well as living with the apathy of others. “Apathy has its own abuse,” he says.

Mitchell says he already had dealt with his bitterness and anger, but the book still was “cathartic.” He hopes the book will give people the courage to face their own issues.

Most people might want to put their painful past behind them, but Mitchell has prayed God would not completely heal him. He fears that without the wounds that remain, he would lose compassion – his ability to “suffer with” – because he might not be able to relate to others’ pain anymore.

He also wants to live out of the gratitude for those who helped him. “I appreciate what the Covenant did,” Mitchell says. “The Covenant has had a theology with shoe leather.”

To purchase a copy of Mitchell’s book online, please see Covenant Bookstore. To visit his website, see A Million Little Proofs.

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