WEDGWOOD REMEMBERED: Couple still works with youth
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)--David and Tralissa Griffin, whose 14-year-old daughter Cassie was one of the seven people killed by a gunman at Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas, haven't let the tragedy deter them from working with the church's youth ministry. In written comments to Baptist Press near the 10-year anniversary of the tragedy, the Griffins noted that they have "always had a heart for youth" and worked with youth even at other churches before they were married and before they joined Wedgwood. "Although our daughter was 14 when killed, we have not been discouraged, but strengthened all the more to continue to work with young people," they wrote. "We also enjoyed watching our son Chris, who is three years younger than Cassie, as he grew in the youth group. We felt very strongly, after the shooting, that we were not going to let Satan drive us out of our home church and have continued in ministry there." As they work with the students in their Sunday School class, one of their main goals is to build relationships both at church and outside church. "This is the best way to demonstrate God's love for us and His desire to have a personal relationship with us," the couple said. "Because of our experience, we try to remain transparent with the youth that we teach through both good times and bad times. We want them to realize that God does not promise an easy life, but having a strong personal relationship with God will prepare us to walk with Him through the trials." And as they minister to teenagers, their daughter's memory inspires them. "She had a boldness that caused her to talk with her friends openly about God and invite them to church," the Griffins said. Cassie started collecting frogs in elementary school, and after the family moved to Fort Worth she happened to notice a poster in a Christian bookstore that said "FROG: Fully Rely On God." "She was elated to see that her passion for collecting frogs could have a special meaning," they said. "Since her death, many of her close friends and others began giving us little 'frog' gifts, so we are constantly reminded that to make it through life during the trials of this world we must fully rely on God for strength, peace and direction."
Kim Jones’ legacy lives on in video
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)--Stephanie Jones couldn't quite agree with the old adage that time heals all wounds. Her 23-year-old daughter Kim was killed 10 years ago when a gunman walked into the sanctuary of Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas.
WEDGWOOD REMEMBERED: Wedgwood
youth minister reflects on shootings
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)--Jay Fannin had been the youth minister at Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas, for a year and a half when a gunman walked in and killed seven people during a youth rally.
FIRST-PERSON: I remember
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Some events become etched in your mind and you can remember them in vivid detail. Such is the Wedgwood shooting.
At anniversary, Wedgwood focuses on God’s faithfulness
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)--Songs, tears and prayers acknowledging God's faithfulness flowed from Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas, as the church held a special commemoration Sept. 13 of the 10th anniversary of the tragic shooting that stunned the nation and forever changed the congregation. On Sept. 15, 1999, a gunman entered Wedgwood during a Wednesday night See You at the Pole rally and began shooting, leaving seven people dead and wounding five others before killing himself. The commemorative service provided a time of remembrance and reflection through singing, video testimonies and a time of prayer for healing. Outside, churchgoers placed "stones of remembrance" on a granite monument, dedicated in 2002, that honors the victims. A theme throughout the evening was God's faithfulness during the midst of tragedy. The church's choir led in singing such hymns as "Great Is Thy Faithfulness" and "Amazing Grace" in addition to contemporary songs that amplified God's sovereignty in bringing good out of bad circumstances. Video interviews with family members who lost loved ones and individuals wounded in the shooting testified to the peace and strength they found in God as well as the lessons He has taught them. Kathy Jo Rogers, whose husband Shawn was killed, said, "The main thing that God has taught me in these 10 years is to learn to trust Him. I trusted Him for my salvation before Sept. 15, 1999, but I had never had to really trust Him."
WEDGWOOD REMEMBERED: Shootings, 10 years ago, gripped pastor’s grief, theology
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)–Just a day removed from preaching his mother’s funeral after “praying her into heaven” with his two sisters, Al Meredith sat on a dock near his boyhood home in Michigan, watching a freighter pass by and thinking to himself, “When I get back to Fort Worth, I’m going to need time to […]
WEDGWOOD REMEMBERED: Seminary lost students, alumni in gunman’s mayhem
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)–On Sept. 15, 1999, Larry Ashbrook walked into Wedgwood Baptist Church and opened fire during a youth worship service, killing seven people and injuring several others before taking his own life. Upon hearing of the shooting, students and faculty members at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, only five miles away from the church […]
WEDGWOOD REMEMBERED: Shootings killed 7
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP)–Seven people — four teenagers and three adults — were killed Sept. 15, 1999, when a gunman entered the sanctuary at Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas. About 150 people were in the sanctuary for an area-wide rally for the annual See You at the Pole prayer event, celebrating earlier rallies […]