I think any words I add to this story will only cheapen it, so I’ll keep my part short.
If you haven’t already heard, this past Sunday, an assistant counselor at the Living Church of God’s Ohio LYC Camp was killed during a tragic water skiing accident. Her name was Morgan Montgomery, she was 19 years old, and she had been baptized for 19 days.
There aren’t words. Not from me, at least. Not today. I wouldn’t be remotely qualified. The only thing I will say is that in the aftermath of such a devastating blow, I’ve been reminded of something that’s so easy to overlook:
The Church doesn’t have boundaries. Not manmade boundaries, anyway. It’s bigger than that; it’s bigger than a logo or a trademark or a corporate identity. God’s Church is composed of God’s people, and it’s during tragic moments like these that we see those artificial boundaries melt away.
I’m not naïve enough to think these boundaries exist without reasons. The history of God’s Church is a long and complicated one, and any solution is going to require more than all of us getting into a room and pretending everything’s okay. This isn’t a post to say that unity is possible if we would all just play nice with each other. What I am saying is that when we draw the borders of our organizations, we’re not drawing the borders of God’s Church.
God’s Church is filled with God’s people. The people who are seeking Him and serving Him and being led by His Spirit. And during this past week, I’ve seen an outpouring of sympathy from scores of those people, regardless of their abbreviation of choice. “Brethren” means more than the people who attend your congregation. Your brethren are your brothers and sisters in the faith, and you probably have more of them than you think.
I don’t know the Montgomery family, and I never met Morgan, but from everything I can tell, she was my sister. Her death is a painful loss for the entire Church of God community, and it’s been gratifying to see that, in spite of our differences, we’ve been able to embrace that loss together.
But enough from me. Below you’ll find a video clip of Morgan’s father, Mr. Martin Montgomery, who flew in to the camp from Australia and gave this touching and heartfelt message:
Until next time,