South Abbotsford Church holds first service since stabbing death of Letisha Reimer
Other teen injured in random stabbing also a member of church which says, 'our world is broken'
The Sunday service at the South Abbotsford Church tried hard to find some light in the darkness that has descended upon parishioners since two of its members were randomly stabbed, resulting in the death of Letisha Reimer.
"The truth is there's not much of any deeper, darker valley that any church could walk through than where we find ourselves today," said pastor Matt Ewart.
Reimer, 13, died after she was stabbed last Tuesday at Abbotsford Secondary School while another student, a 14-year-old girl whose identity is under a court-imposed publication ban, was wounded.
Gabriel Brandon Klein, 21, has been charged with second degree murder and aggravated assault.
In church Sunday, the congregation reflected on the violence and celebrated the Reimer's life.
"We all have a common connection and that connection is ... broken. Our world is broken," said senior pastor Steve Berg, who rushed to the hospital to support the families of the victims the day of the stabbings.
"I happened to walk into the hospital and was just horrified by the scene unfolding," he said,
"But in that moment I had to be with the family, not to feel about how I'm feeling but to be there for them."
It's the kind of the support those at South Abbotsford Church are trying to give one another now, knowing that they may never understand why the violence at the school happened.
"There's been a lot of introspection, where some are sitting there and thinking, 'Why?'" said parishioner Joel Feenstra.
"We don't know why. It's going to take a lot of time to heal itself."
"My heart breaks for all these kids who lost a friend and for their family who are questioning a lot of things," added parishioner Carly Penner.
The pastors at the church say they're there for the families, and several parishioners said they would begin providing meals for them as well.
Those suffering also say that, despite the tragedy, they believe Letisha Reimer has gone to a better place.
"I don't know how people who don't have faith are dealing with this, that don't believe she's in a better place now," said youth pastor Mike Olynyk. "God's my rock, he's what I stand on when this stuff happens."
"We are broken", among 1st words spoken at South Abbotsford Church this am. 1st service since Letisha Reimer killed. <a href="https://t.co/x5drebZFky">pic.twitter.com/x5drebZFky</a>—@CBCDeborahGoble
With files from Deborah Goble.