Some believe in angels and others don't. But a story coming out of Center, Missouri, might lead skeptics to conclude that a higher-power sometimes intervenes in the midst of tragedy. Of course, there's also the potential that a real-life priest is responsible for the life-saving act that's gaining widespread attention -- and that he has simply yet to be found.
Allow us to explain.
KHQA-TV is reporting a story that seems virtually unbelievable. After Aaron Smith, 26, struck Katie Lentz, 19, in a head-on car crash on Sunday morning, authorities claim they began a long rescue process. After 60 minutes of trying to get Lentz out of the vehicle (she was pinned between the steering wheel and the seat), rescue crews, at Lentz's request, prayed out loud for the trapped woman.
And that's when a mystery priest allegedly appeared. According to accounts, he came out of nowhere and brought intense calm upon the situation.
"He came up and approached the patient, and offered a prayer," New London Fire Chief Raymond Reed told KHQA-TV. "It was a Catholic priest who had anointing oil with him. A sense of calmness came over her, and it did us as well."
Considering how many people were at the scene and interacting with the mystery faith leader, the story is a fascinating one.
"I can't be for certain how it was said, but myself and another firefighter, we very plainly heard that we should remain calm, that our tools would now work and that we would get her out of that vehicle," the firefighter added.
Now here's where things get weird. After another fire department showed up, the rescue proceeded easily and the tools worked, as promised. But when nearly a dozen firefighters turned around to thank the priest, he was gone; the road was empty. Considering that the road was blocked off for a quarter of a mile during the rescue and that no cars were around, the scenario, on the surface, seems a bit bizarre.
Lentz's friends and family want to thank the priest, but, so far, he's nowhere to be found.
"Where did this guy come from?" Travis Wiseman said, speaking rhetorically about the faith leader . "We're looking for the priest and so far, no one has seen him. Whether it was a priest as an angel or an actual angel, he was an angel to all those and to Katie."
Smith has been charged with a DWI, second degree assault and failure to drive on the right side of the road. And the search for the priest forges on.
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