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Letter from Buckhorn Presbyterian Church
Around the Presbytery offers of prayer and provisions have been many and much appreciated by the folks at Buckhorn church here in Masonville.
The day the fire started a wedding was held at the church. We came out from the ceremony to be greeted by a parade of horse and cattle trailers parading past our front door. News media cameras were set up across the street.
The view was spectacular, if not immediately threatening. Little did we know. By Sunday morning road blocks had been set up and hundreds were being evacuated including about twelve of our church families. We found it necessary to cancel church.
About half of these families have returned to their homes, but half are still waiting after two weeks — some in campgrounds, some with relatives, some in motels. Some have not evacuated because once out, no return allowed. Imagine one family unloading provisions from outside to families determined to "stick it out" on the inside.
The church is no longer in any danger although the smoke hangs heavily overhead, and yesterday's annual "Blessing of the Animals" service took on special meaning as we gathered. On the Saturday the fire started, who would have thought that 248 homes and 83,000 acres would be charred along with beautiful Poudre and Red Feather Lakes canyons affected. (To say nothing of Estes and Colorado Springs areas).
We are so grateful for the hundreds of fire fighters and support personnel, and so many volunteer efforts and offers. Especially meaningful to us was the call from Dan Saperstein at the very outset, offering generous funding from the Presbytery and One Great Hour of Sharing Disaster Relief. Who'd have thought, after all these years of giving to One Great Hour of Sharing, we ourselves would be on the receiving end!
We join all in praying for "soft soaking rains," for all the recovery efforts, and for God's promise of re-creation of the earth in the days and years to come.
Rev. Ernie Freund, Pastor
Buckhorn Presbyterian Church