The tragic Sutherland Springs Baptist Church shooting this Sunday hit home personally for our own Jen Watson (wife of Pastor Chris Watson, Rehoboth UMC Caroline) who has family living in Sutherland Springs, Texas. First Baptist Church has deep family ties for Jen, as her whole family was raised in that church and many of the deceased and wounded are family friends. As circumstances would have it, Jen's family happened to worship at a different church in town yesterday. However, other family sheltered in place as they heard the gun shots from their home.
This week, Pastor Chris Watson and the Rehoboth Caroline congregation are organizing tangible expressions of care and concern. I have asked the Rehoboth Caroline congregation to serve as the collection place for sending cards, letters, and other expressions of care from the Rappahannock River District. One thing we know is that burial expenses will be an issue as some families will need to bury 5 or more members. Pastor Chris will coordinate our efforts and response with the local Sutherland clergy.
If your congregation or members would like to make some expression of care, please prepare material items and deliver them to Rehoboth Caroline UMC at 18580 Partlow Road, Beaverdam, VA 23015 by Thursday, November 16th.
Rev. Ted Smith
Rappahannock River District Superintendent