FORT WORTH (CBS 11 NEWS) – Dr. Kent Brantly took the stage in Atlanta for a press conference as an Ebola survivor. He was thankful to the staff of the hospital and relief agencies who came to his aid and for the strong ties to his faith that helped him survive.

“Through the care of Samaritans Purse and SIM missionary team in liberia, the use on an experimental drug and the expertise and resources of the Emory University Hospital, God saved my life,” Brantly told the staff and doctors assembled in Atlanta. “A direct answer to thousands and thousands of prayers.”

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The press conference was seen around the country live.

But perhaps no one was more excited to watch it than his church family back in Fort Worth at Southside Church of Christ off Hemphill Street. They were amazed by how healthy Brantly appeared.

“He looked exactly the same as last time I saw him,” said church member Ken Smith. “He looks great!”

“I’ve heard story after story about how this situation has impacted the lives of individuals around the globe, both among my friends and family and among complete strangers,” Brantly said in his statement. “I cannot thank you enough for your prayers and support.”

Doctors said they don’t know how or if experimental drugs they used on Brantly affected the Ebola. He is now free of the virus. Some might call it unbelievable. But Brantly and members of his church said they believed in the power of prayer all along.

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“Its amazing, its great, its fantastic, but I don’t know if unbelievable is the right word,” Smith said.

And, just like when Brantly was diagnosed with Ebola, his fellow church members gathered hand in hand Thursday and prayed, this time in thanks.

“I think it was overwhelming emotion,” Smith said of watching his friend on TV. “I mean, I’m not a teary person but I was fighting back tears as I am right now. It’s just a giant sense of relief and thankful to God for answering all the prayers we’ve been offering.”

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