I originally saw the tragic news in a brief tweet on my Twitter feed. A bus carrying a Junior A hockey team from Saskatchewan, Canada had crashed into a tractor trailer. Fifteen players and team staff from the Humboldt Broncos Junior A hockey team lost their lives. As I tried to find more details on the crash I found the Humboldt Broncos official website. The administrator of the website was extremely sensitive to the tragedy and quickly removed everything off the website. There was one poster that was added, the Humboldt Broncos emblem, and a young man in prayer.
It is not only the town of Humboldt, or the hockey world, or the province of Saskatchewan that is grieving. All of Canada shares a bit of the pain for these dear families. The news has spread around the world. My wife 1st heard of the tragedy by seeing it on the New Zealand Herald. I used to play hockey, and I loved the sport. Like a lot of young boys, it was my dream to make to the pros. But I was never that good.
These young men were indeed chasing their dreams of hockey. I don’t know any of the players, and have never been to Humboldt, but I feel so dreadful for the loss the families and community must feel. As a father with young men as children, I know this tragedy could happen to any of us. Our kids go on school trips. Parents in the country will see their children get on the school bus each morning, expecting they would get off the bus in the afternoon. However this bus did not make it to it’s destination. We can’t imagine the ache and pain, and we don’t know how we can help. But we can pray. And that what the families and the community of Humboldt needs right now.
If the accident had not happened, this evening there was to have been a playoff game in Humboldt, and the arena would have been rocking. The arena would still have been filled to capacity, this evening instead it was for a prayer vigil which was being organized by the Saskatchewan government. The ceremony, was expected to about 45 minutes includes hymns, reading of scripture and special music.
As I look over the Order of Service for the prayer vigil, I think of the times when this scripture and these hymns have been a source of strength when I have felt very low in different times of my life. And my prayer that they would be that same source of strength in what will be a long, difficult healing process. So please continue to pray. This is what the families and the town of Humboldt needs most right now.