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Offering Healing To Hurting People

The 461 Response Ohio Team prayed with people in the wake of the Dayton shooting.

An Assemblies of God U.S. Missions Chaplaincy Ministries response team prayed with and ministered to more than 100 people in the wake of the Aug. 4 shooting in Dayton, Ohio, that left 10 people dead and 27 wounded.

Members of the 461 Response Ohio Team from various Assemblies of God churches throughout the Buckeye State reacted to the tragedy.

“Over 100 people were prayed with and ministered to over a period of five days,” says Terry D. Hunt, manager of 461 Response Ohio. One young man who accepted Christ as Savior connected with U.S. missionary Andy S. Erickson, Chi Alpha Campus Ministries director at Wright State University in Dayton.

“As we did our best to minister to the broken hearts of our Chi Alpha students, the 461 Response Ohio Team quickly ministered to the hearts in the city,” says Erickson, 34.

Hunt, 65, also is pastor of Tri County Family Assembly of God in Bluffton, Ohio.

“We prayed with many who had just left the bar prior to the shooting,” Hunt says. “We ministered to and prayed with many university-aged students.”

Jennie M. Barger, 52, a member of the 461 Response Ohio Team, recalls talking with a woman disillusioned with God, the Church, and Christians in general.

“After she was done venting, I asked her if I could pray with her and she said, ‘Sure, if that will make you feel better; I’ll never turn away anyone’s kindness,’” Barger recounts. “I then took her hand and asked the Lord to reveal himself to her in a very real way in the coming days. She thanked me and I encouraged her by letting her know that a true relationship with Christ would transform her life.”

Hunt prayed for Willow Lopez, 23, a political science major at Dayton University.

“He stood with me for quite some time and explained why he was there,” Lopez says. “He helped me cope with the tragedy and my negative thoughts at that moment. I am eternally grateful that God led him to serve in Dayton.”

Hunt notes that the ministry is based on Psalm 46:1, God is a refuge and strength, as well as Galataians 6.2, which encourages Christians to help carry the difficulties of others.

“Many were truly seeking a refuge in time of trouble,” Hunt says. “The 461 Response Ohio Team was to be there to not only bear one another’s burdens, but to offer help, hope and healing to a hurting people.”

The 461 Response Ohio Team is part of the AG Chaplaincy Ministries 461 Response Team.

Eric Tiansay

Eric Tiansay has been a full-time journalist since 1993, writing articles for Christian media since 2000. He lives in central Florida, where he is an active member of an Assemblies of God church.