That’s something you never want to experience in youth ministry. Wednesday night after our SWITCH experience we got a call from a student who was leaving. He said a kid got hit by a car on NW Expressway. Vince, my fellow youth pastor and I ran as fast as we could out to where we saw traffic backing up. My mind exploded: “No, oh Jesus NO!”
Before we knew it he was gone. Anthony Guzman an 8th grader from one of our main middle schools CAPPS in the Putnam City district.
That night set in motion a wave of grief that settled on our students and leaders from CAPPS. The next morning we were up at the school all day, sitting with students, holding them while they cried, listening to their questions of why and not able to really answer them.
We don’t know why.
I was so proud and blessed by the showing of our team of leaders. The whole CAPPS team was present along with others. A few of my fellow staff members from other campuses joined us to minister to the students who lost their friend. More than twenty-five adults stood in the lunch cafeteria that day holding hands to pray for the 8th grade class of CAPPS. God’s presence was there. He was comforting, healing and showing Himself to these students.
Losing a student is something no one ever wants to experience. But if you have to I would want to be surrounded by the people who showed up yesterday to give comfort. I would want to be a part of a community who I know is praying and reaching out any way they can. Our group will never be the same after this tragedy. But I think the change will be for the good. God is good even in circumstances like this.
A memorial fund has been set up in Anthony’s name. You can donate at any metro MidFirst Banks. Thank you for your prayers.