Musician and evangelist Carman Licciardello revealed on Facebook Thursday morning that he has myeloma cancer and asked for fans to pray.
“I have delayed writing this," he shared. "but those of you I call friends and supporters, who have prayed for me and this ministry need to know about this new battle that lies ahead. One week ago I was diagnosed with myeloma cancer. It is incurable and I've been given a 3- to 4-year window of time.”
Licciardello toured with southern gospel music legend Bill Gaither in the '80s. He was also Christian publication Charmisa Magazine's first “Favorite Male Vocalist of the Year” for the years 1987 to 1989. Billboard magazine also recognized Licciardello as the first “Contemporary Christian Artist of the Year” in 1980. According to Charmisa, the 57-year-old has "15 gold and platinum albums and videos, and has sold more than 10 million records."
Licciardello expressed optimism despite the dire prognosis. He told fans he plans to continue touring and ministering through song.
"I want you all to know that I will continue to minister and win souls until I can't do it any longer. My life has always been about ministry. I have a call of God to touch lives with the gospel of Jesus Christ and that's what I will do until the Lord calls me home."
He continued "I will not leave this world quietly and I want the devil to know that he put cancer on absolutely the wrong Italian."
According to the note, Licciardello will begin his treatment Friday with a bone biopsy. He asked for prayers and for fans to continue coming to his concerts so he can "see your faces, shake your hands and hug your necks."