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‘This is a victory story’: Bethel worship leader posts faith-filled tribute after daughter’s death

by Tola Mbakwe

Bethel worship leader Kalley Heiligenthal has posted short tribute on Instagram to her two-year-old daughter Olive who died unexpectedly two weeks ago.

She wrote on Saturday: “Olive, we miss you, love you so much and we’ll see you soon. We know now more than ever that King Jesus is good and His every word is worth believing and following at any cost. That’s the song we’ll sing until we’re with you again and we finally sing it together. We cannot wait.

It’s a new day, and we’re awake for it. This is a victory story.”

On 15th December Heiligenthal asked the global church to pray for "resurrection power" after her daughter did not wake up from her sleep and was pronounced dead by doctors.

Bethel Church in Redding, California began prayer and worship services asking God to raise Olive from the dead.

After some people raised questions about why the church was praying for God to resurrect the toddler, pastor of the church, Bill Johnson, explained they were praying for a miracle of God because of the "biblical precedent" Jesus set when he raised the dead and commanded his disciples to do so also.

On 21st December the church announced its decision to stop praying for Olive to come back to life.

The church said in a statement: “Olive hasn't been raised. The breakthrough we have sought hasn't come. With the same heart of confidence in God's goodness, we receive the comfort of the Good Shepherd as Andrew, Kalley, and Olive's big sister Elsie, their family, and our church walk together through the valley of the shadow of death (Psalm 23). And so, we are moving towards a memorial service and celebration of her life.

"The joy of our faith is that, though we haven't seen the miracle of Olive being raised, she is alive in the presence of God. Her mom and dad will see her again, and we too will join her in resurrection one day."

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