CHARLOTTE, N.C., May 18, 2018 – The Billy Graham Rapid Response Team has deployed crisis-trained chaplains to the Texas community of Santa Fe following a mass shooting this morning at Santa Fe High School. Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said in a news conference that there are eight to 10 casualties with many more injured, including a Santa Fe Independent School District police officer.
“We have witnessed—on multiple occasions, from Hurricane Harvey to Sutherland Springs, and Richardson to now in Santa Fe—the hurt and loss that Texans have experienced over the last year,” said Jack Munday, international director of the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team. “We pray for the families, students, teachers, churches, law enforcement, and the community as they experience God’s hope and comfort through this tragedy.”
Franklin Graham, president and CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, shared, “Pray for all those affected by the tragic shooting that took place this morning in a high school in Santa Fe, Texas.”
Texas-based chaplains arrived to the community within hours of the tragedy. Additional chaplains will arrive later today, May 18, with more on stand-by to deploy as needed.
The team responded to Parkland, Fla., and Benton, Ky., earlier this year after school shootings claimed the lives of 19 in those communities. With approximately 350 responses around the world, the Santa Fe shooting will mark the 35th time the team has been to Texas—accounting for 10 percent of all Rapid Response Team deployments.
In addition to Santa Fe, chaplains are currently on the islands of Kauai and Hawaii in Hawaii in response to historic flooding and the eruption of the Kilauea volcano.
For more information on the ministry, including videos, photos, news articles and an interactive map of former and current deployments, visit www.billygraham.org/rrt. Updates can also be found at www.facebook.com/RRTChaplains.
About the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team
The Billy Graham Rapid Response Team was developed by Franklin Graham and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association following the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. It has since grown into an international network of chaplains in the U.S., U.K., Canada and Australia who are specifically trained to deal with crisis situations. They have deployed to more than 280 disaster sites, including shootings, floods, hurricanes, wildfires and tornadoes.