Irving pastor donates kidney as a rare 1 in 100,000 match to churchgoer’s granddaughter

IRVING ( — It seems almost too good to be true. 

Destiny, luck, or perhaps a touch of divine intervention came together at Woodhaven Presbyterian Church in Irving, where Pastor Shane Webb’s desire to become an organ donor was answered in the most remarkable way.

It was six years ago that Pastor Webb was serving at a church in Mount Pleasant, Texas. During that time, an urge stirred within him, one that would eventually lead to a selfless act of kindness. 

“I heard a presentation about the need for kidney donation. It set off something in my heart, to provide that gift for someone,” Webb said. 

Even after moving to Irving, the urge persisted, becoming a constant nagging feeling. 

“I never thought I could take off that much time, I didn’t know anyone I knew who needed one,” he admitted.

However, fate had its own plans, as a member of his congregation shared a story that would change both their lives forever. And it happened unexpectedly one day at a church event.

“She’s a member of my congregation; she told me this story about her granddaughter that really needed this transplant, and I said, ‘Well, you can have one of mine,'” the pastor recalled. 

Sounds easy enough, right? But donating is harder than it seems.

According to UC Davis Health, the odds of a total stranger being a perfect match for a specific kidney patient are approximately one in 100,000. 

“You are a match with a complete stranger. I mean, what’s the likelihood of that?” Webb said. 

Well, for them, it happened. 

Claudia Hagman has battled kidney problems for over a decade, and her journey took a critical turn in 2021, when—at just 25 years old—she had to begin dialysis. Not only did the pair have to be a match, but Webb also had to be healthy enough to donate. 

And in May of this year, their lives were forever changed as the transplant took place.

“I now get to go see my friends, and in the spur-of-the-moment go on a hike. Just live, and not be afraid of my own body,” said Hagman. 

Though rare, Webb believes their story was destined to unfold precisely as it did. 

“For me, it was the answer,” he said. “This was the right time and the right place. It confirmed it was right to donate my kidney.”

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