Kyle Lake, 33, pastor of University Baptist Church in Waco, Texas, died Sunday after being electrocuted while standing in the church baptismal during a morning service. Lake received a shock while adjusting a microphone before baptizing a woman. He was pronounced dead at 11:30 a.m. after being taken to the hospital. The woman being baptized was not yet in the water and was not seriously injured.
"At first, there was definitely confusion, just because everyone was trying to figure out what was going on," Ben Dudley, community pastor at University Baptist Church, told the Waco Tribune-Herald. "Everyone just immediately started praying." About 800 people were attending the service, which was more than usual due to Baylor University's homecoming weekend, reports the Associated Press.
"We will move forward as a church," Dudley told the congregation at a Sunday evening service. "I don't know how, when, why, where, or what's going to happen, but we will continue as a church in the community, because that is what Kyle would have wanted."
Chris Seay and musician David Crowder founded University Baptist in 1995. Seay is now pastor of Ecclesia in Houston. University Baptist has grown into a community of about 600.
Lake was known beyond his church in Waco as the author of two books, Understanding God's Will and [Re]understanding Prayer, and as a rising leader in new church movements such as Emergent. In Understanding God's Will, Lake wrote, "May God bless our journeys with him and give us the awareness to encounter him in whatever our roads may holdall things planned and unplanned."
Memorial and visitation services will be held today in Waco. Lake is survived by his wife and three children.
Copyright © 2005 Christianity Today. ...