Pastor Greg Stoever of the Grace Brethren church in Sacramento, California (pictured) sent along this report of an accident in the church’s neighborhood and ministry opportunities, along with prayer requests. More on the crash may be seen by clicking on http://www.sacbee.com/101/story/583913.html
On Wednesday night, just before 11:00 pm, a horrific traffic accident occurred on our church property. We did not learn of it until Thursday morning.
Our campus is on the corner of a controlled intersection. A vehicle with nine teenagers was struck by an apparent drunk driver who ran a red light. The force of the crash threw both vehicles onto our lawn. One of the teens died instantly at the scene, and a few others are still in very critical condition.
Many of these teens are from a large local high school that is close to our church. In the aftermath of this trauma, many students gathered on our church lawn this afternoon, all of them understandably dazed, grieved, and confused.
They’ve already created a memorial with flowers, balloons, pictures, etc. on a light pole near the crash site. I had opportunity to meet some of them, express care and hurt for what they are going through, and pray for them.
In God’s providence, I also had opportunity to visit the home of the young man (Scott), who died at the scene. He lived with His Dad (Scott, Sr.), but his mom and older sister were also there.
I listened, again expressed care and hurt for what they are going through, shared Ps. 46:1 (“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in times of trouble”), and prayed. The family has no church affiliation and I know nothing of their spiritual condition. But I made myself and our church available, and they were very receptive. I’ll be visiting Scott, Sr. again tomorrow, and it appears I’ll be directly involved with the arrangements and eventual memorial service.
A candlelight vigil is scheduled for tonight on our church lawn at 7:00 p.m. A number of people in our church have mobilized to provide hot cocoa and cookies, and we are also going to have a few fire pits going to warm people. I’ve been asked to share some thoughts and prayers during the gathering.
Please be in much prayer for God’s glory in Christ to be magnified and known in the midst of these events. Pray that God would give wisdom and grace to me and our church body as He enables us to be “salt and light” in this situation (Mt. 5:13-16; Col. 4:5,6).
And certainly pray for God’s will and work to be done in the lives of all the family and friends who are so directly impacted by this event – that those who know Christ would be strengthened in their faith, and those who don’t know Him to be brought to saving faith.
Thank you for your prayers!