"Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson has asked fans to pray for his granddaughter, Mia Robertson, who will undergo a sixth surgery to repair a cleft lip and palate.
On Wednesday, Phil announced the news on his Facebook page:
"I have a prayer request for y'all. On March 27, our Mia will have another surgery that will involve breaking her jaw. We ask that you please start praying for her now and continue for 6-10 weeks after. It's a long recovery with a liquid diet."
He added that Missy Robertson, Mia's mother, is selling necklaces to benefit the Mia Moo fund, a non-profit organization to help raise awareness and to help fund research for children with cleft lips and palates.
"We ask that you wear it for her now and until after the surgery," Phil wrote, sharing the link to . the foundation's website.
Mia, 11, was born with a facial cleft, and has had five previous surgeries, the first of which took place when she was just three months old. Cleft lips and palates form in the womb, resulting in a gap in the upper lip or the roof of the mouth because the tissue did not fully form during early pregnancy.
"She realizes that her condition is a marathon, not a quick fix," says Jase Robertson, Mia's father.
"There are times when it is very stressful ... there's different stages that the child has to go through," Missy has said, expressing sorrow that Mia will often have to change a certain behavior after a surgery, which is hard for small children to do. "I have a few days where I'm kind of down about it ... but then because of our faith, because of the support of our family, and because of Mia's optimistic attitude and resolve, we just kind of get through the first few days and it becomes a new normal."
However, on her part, Mia views her condition with a positive outlook. After undergoing surgery last January, which was documented in the "Duck Dynasty" season finale, the 11 year old quoted Psalm 46 - "Be still and know that I am God" (English Standard Version, Psalm 46:10a), which God has used to help her cope with her condition. "I like this verse because whenever I am sad or have struggles, I know that God is bigger than all of that, and He is bigger than any of your struggles, too," she said.
"[Mia] is full of life right now and is really just having fun being herself and being a kid...So we're just enjoying her, and she's enjoying life," Missy told the Gospel Herald last year.