An American who was among 74
people killed in a Uganda terrorist attack was related to Summit Church, a
Southern Baptist congregation in Durham.
Nate Henn was a former college rugby player who used his love of rugby to
mobilize assistance for children suffering from warfare in Uganda. He died July
11 on a rugby field in Kampala when he was struck by shrapnel from a terrorist
bomb. Three bombs exploded in coordinated attacks on a garden restaurant and
the rugby field while hundreds of people had gathered to watch a World Cup
soccer game between Spain and the Netherlands, according to news reports. A
Somali terrorist group claimed responsibility for the attacks.
Henn, 25, had gone to Uganda to meet children he had raised money to help
through Invisible Children, a San Diego group that helps “forgotten children.”
The children called Henn “Oteka” — “the strong one” — and loved “Nate’s wit,
strength, character and steadfast friendship,” the group said on its website.
Henn was the son of Bob and
Julie Henn, members of Summit’s North Raleigh campus, Summit pastor J.D. Greear
reported in a July 13 article on his website. The grief of losing Henn was
compounded for the family when a brother, who was flying home to be with his
family, was involved in a plane crash, Greear noted. While the brother was not
critically injured, a second passenger was critically injured and the pilot
died, the Associated Press reported.
The article Greear posted, titled “A Pretty Devastating Day,” also noted that
the same day Henn died, Summit Church also lost Helen Young, “a matriarch” of
the young congregation, and Chai Atwood, son of Summit’s college pastor, Trevor
Atwood and his wife, Keva, who had been born 14 weeks premature.
“Death and pain put the joy of salvation in sharp relief,” Greear wrote to the
“Our sufferings are real, our cries of pain are real. But we weigh our present
pain against the glory that God is working through that pain; a glory that will
outweigh (though it is hard to believe sometimes) all the suffering that we
endure in the present,” Greear said.
“Paul says that we now ‘groan in anguish’
like a woman in childbirth. Our groaning is real, but it is not a groan of
Greear pointed out that in Romans 8, the Apostle Paul likens the pain people
experience in this life to the pain of childbirth. “Yes, we genuinely hurt, but
the glory God is bringing forth in us and through us, for the age to come,
makes ours a light and momentary affliction,” Greear said. “Summit, let us not
forget that it is in our pain that we have one of the clearest opportunities to
put the glory of God on display. It is in our pain that we are able to show
that God is better to us than even life itself, and that our inheritance in God
is something not even death can take away.”
(EDITOR’S NOTE — Compiled by Baptist Press assistant editor Mark Kelly.)