On Wednesday the 12th of August the Aberdeen to Glasgow Queen Street passenger train left the tracks after it hit a landslide near Stonehaven. The train had been turning back after coming across an initial landslip when the tragedy struck.
The first chaplain on-site was Graham, followed later Liam to support him in supporting the railway family. Graham, Dereck and Johanna, the team based in Scotland, have each been visiting the stations and depots along the route listening to and supporting those who have been touched by the loss of their friends and colleagues.
To mark the passing of rail colleagues Brett McCullough and Donald Dinnie, and the passenger Christopher Stuchbury, the Railway fell silent for one minute at 09:43 am on Wednesday 19th of August. Dereck was at Aberdeen and was able to say a few words to those gathered to pay their respects, while Johanna was at the crash site.
As a chaplaincy, we have tried to be a support to those who have been affected by this tragedy. As chaplains, we have the desire to help restore the brokenhearted, but when faced with such tragedy we realise that without the presences of the Holy Spirit, we have nothing to offer. Being present with those touched by the sorrow of the event is sometimes the best we can do.
Mark 9:41 says “For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward.” It shows that sometimes the greatest of gestures is the most humble act.
As the weeks progress, please pray for the chaplaincy team, especially Dereck, Johanna and Graham, who have all done so much in such a short space of time to show the care and compassion of Jesus to those who need it.