Our thoughts and prayers remain with our neighbors at Fort Hood, 60 miles southeast of Waco, as they continue to deal with the tragic shooting that claimed 13 lives last Thursday. With the nation’s largest military base right outside their door, most every resident of nearby Killeen has some connection to the base where the killings occurred.
Dr. Randall Wallace, BA ’84, D.Min ’07, is pastor of First Baptist Killeen, where about a third of the congregation has direct ties to Fort Hood. The church was also home to a a multi-denominational service last Sunday night that brought together believers from across the city as well as leaders like Texas Governor Rick Perry.
“My church has civilian people who were in the room at the time [of the shooting], and they were spared bullets,” Wallace told CBS News. “Fort Hood has been a sanctuary to our families… What we said was, ‘You go to Iraq; we’ll take care of your family.’ The sad reality is that this now takes away one of our safe places.”
Wallace and other pastors in the area have a tough task ahead, answering all the “why” questions that follow an event like this. Wallace, at least, can speak from the place of one who has battled adversity in his own life, having overcome dyslexia to earn his degree in religious studies from Baylor in 1984, then a master’s at Southwestern Theological Seminary before completing his doctorate from Baylor’s Truett Seminary two years ago. He has served as pastor at FBC Killeen since 2000 and also is a member of the Baptist General Convention of Texas’ Executive Board.
Sic ’em, Pastor Wallace, for your service in time of need!