As members grieve over the death of a 16-year-old pastor’s daughter, Oasis Community Church is giving teen members a chance to express themselves tonight through a teen service.
Youth pastor Josh Galletta and his team “will be giving our students the space to share their memories of Olivia, give voice to their feelings and receive pastoral care and support,” the church said in a letter to members posted on its Facebook page.
Other church activities, including a weekend yardsale, arts meetup and sermon series will be postponed, the letter said to provide more worship following the death of Olivia Paige Grimes, 16, daughter of Oasis pastors Phil and Robyn Grimes.
Olivia fell more than 100 feet to her death Monday from a rope swing at Carolina Point, a Young Life camp along the border between North and South Carolina near Brevard, N.C.
She had been strapped to a large pendulum, along with two other campers, when she somehow became unattached and fell, officials said. The other two campers were uninjured.
A spokesman for Youth Life said all rides at the organization’s camps, including swings, are subject to “strict protocols regarding upkeep of equipment as well as safety training and operating procedures,” Greenville Online reported. The South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation said that the swing had not previously been inspected as it did not meet the qualifications of an amusement ride, but inspectors will now review the device in the wake of Grimes’s death.
Oasis Community Church said there has been no announcement yet about a memorial service, and church officials are formulating a plan for people who want to support the Grimes family.
Here are some reports on the incident from television stations in Florida and the Carolinas: