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USA News

11 YWAM missionaries confirmed dead in bus crash

by Lydia Davies

At least 15 individuals, including eleven missionaries associated with Youth With A Mission (YWAM) have died in a devastating road accident on Saturday.

The incident, involving multiple vehicles and leaving twelve others critically injured, unfolded in the Ngaramtoni suburb, Tanaznia,

The bus driver also lost his life in the incident.

The news was confirmed by YWAM through a series of real-time updates.

"It is morning time in Tanzania, and we are deeply saddened to confirm the passing of another three of our dear missionaries as a result of the tragic traffic accident," YWAM said in a Sunday morning update about the death toll. "Eleven of our friends are now with Jesus. Two are still in critical condition in the hospital”.

On the YWAM Kona website, it reads that the “Leaders and students involved in the Executive Masters Program were on a field trip with other local YWAMers. One mini-bus was struck and overrun by a large truck with failing brakes”.

As the YWAM community grapples with the enormity of this loss, the organisation has rallied to provide support to those impacted, both practically and emotionally. Urging respect for the privacy of the affected families, YWAM has refrained from disclosing the names and nationalities of the deceased missionaries. They have told the public that they are diligently reaching out to families with updates as they become available.

Justine Masejo, the Arusha regional commissioner, detailed the accident's circumstances and its impact on the local community. Among the vehicles involved was one carrying students and teachers from New Vision School of Arusha and a public bus.

The injured were taken to major hospitals in the city, including Mount Meru referral hospital and Selian Lutheran Hospital, for treatment.

In its first update published early Saturday morning, the ministry said, "Two hours ago, we learned of a bus accident in Arusha, Tanzania, with YWAMers who had gathered there attending a University of the Nations Executive Masters course intensive. Facilitators and candidates of the course were traveling together in two buses, when one was hit by a truck."

Part of the latest update reads: “With the ripples of the difficult news of the death of 11 YWAMers in a terrible traffic accident in Tanzania, our prayers are with the family and friends of the deceased.  There are five injured individuals still hospitalised and two more people in critical condition to be rallied around in prayer”.


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