Wednesday, January 04, 2006

When Our Prayers for a Miracle Seem to Fall Flat

ABNS ran this account of the tragedy in West Virginia ( The only survivor was 26-year-old Randal McCloy Jr. Deacon Toler of the ABC church was one of the 12 men who died in the tragic events of the past few days. Optimistic, but ultimately erroneous, news reports dubbed initial reports of survival by all but one of the miners the "West Wirginia Miracle." Growing up I remember hearing stories of the difficulties faced by my paternal grandfather and uncles who spent years in the coal mines. Our hearts go out to the families of all of the miners.


VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS)—A deacon at Stump Chapel—an American Baptist church in Sutton, W.Va.—is one of the 13 miners trapped early Monday by an explosion in the Sago Mine in Tallmansville, W.Va.

American Baptists across the country are encouraged to pray for Deacon Junior Toler and his family, along with the other 12 miners and their families.

Also, Sago Baptist Church—the church in the media photos where families and friends are gathering for news as the crisis unfolds—is an American Baptist congregation in the West Virginia Baptist Convention. Pray for the church, as well, as it ministers to so many at such a difficult time.

Both the West Virginia Baptist Convention and National Ministries, through the Office of Disaster Relief and One Great Hour of Sharing offering funds, have offered assistance to the church.

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