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Church Group in Texas Barely Escapes Van Before It Goes Up in Flames

church van
Screenshots from Facebook / @Jordin Williams

A church van containing 11 youth and two adults caught fire as the group was on its way to a summer camp in Kerrville, Texas, earlier this week. The travelers said that within minutes after they got off the van, it was engulfed in flames.

“About 30 min after I prayed over my babies and others and sent them on their way to youth camp, I got a call that I’ll never forget,” said Jordin Williams in a June 19 Facebook post. “The van they were traveling on caught fire on 610 and by the grace of God, they ALL got off before it was engulfed in flames. They said within 1-2 min after they were out, it was completely engulfed. The details and miracles of how they got to safety are numerous. If you’ll excuse me, I’ll go cry now as I thank God that my babies are ok.”

Church Van Catches Fire on Texas Highway

The church group is with Anchor Church in Houston, Texas. They had met at Deer Park High School and were minutes out on Houston’s I-610 when the van they were traveling in caught on fire. The group’s youth pastor was driving, and his mother was the other adult in the vehicle. 

Williams, a mother of two of the campers, told KHOU 11 that the travelers had noticed an odd smell, which one person had said “smells like BBQ.” While the group thought something was burning, no one thought it was the church van, which experienced “loud explosions” after catching fire, according to KHOU. 

Williams said her 15-year-old son told her that it was a mere 60 seconds between the time the group made it out of the van and when the entire vehicle was consumed in flames.

The cause of the fire was an electrical issue, according to the Houston Fire Department. The youth took refuge from the summer heat in a townhome community while fire crews put out the blaze. 

Williams credits God with protecting the travelers. “Faith has to play a part in it,” she said. “We believed and we prayed over those kids.”

The church group was able to rent another van and has made it safely to their summer camp.

“All I can do is thank God that they’re ok,” Williams said.

Comments on Williams’ post are full of people praising God for his mercy. “A horrifying event captured in a picture that leaves you in awe of Gods [sic] divine intervention!” said user Joyce Haarer. “Thank you Jehovah God for hearing and answering a mothers [sic] prayer. If our eyes could have seen the heavenly rescue. And for the kids involved they all witnessed a supernatural miracle they were a part of.”