Adventist Pastor Loses House,
Gains a Daughter, Appears on CNN
BY MARTIN WEBER, Mid-America Union communication director
ith floodwaters threatening their home, Pastor Jordan Peck of Fargo's Red River Adventist Church prepared to evacuate his family—even as wife Natalie was preparing to give birth.
Unable to get medical assistance, Jordan rose to the occasion with the help of delivery instructions Natalie downloaded from the Internet. Amid the trauma and drama, baby Margaret Elana was born healthy and safe.
A Fargo TV station first featured the story, then The Weather Channel picked it up and now CNN has circulated the story.*
Jordan arranged for mother and baby with their two other children, Elias and Hailey, to stay with friends. Then he returned to sandbag their house in Hendrum, Minnesota, across the border from Fargo. Gallant neighbors helped, but to no avail. Sandbags were frozen and electricity failed. As the pumps quit, floodwaters swamped the house—but not the faith of the Peck family.
Reached by phone at the motel where they are currently stranded in a blizzard, Jordan reports: "Natalie has been a real trooper, remaining calm through all this. She's healthy and the baby is healthy. Our other kids are doing well, adjusting fine."
Asked what the family might need now that their home is lost and their possessions destroyed, Jordan said: "I don't know . . . I've never been through this before. I do know there's more value in the prayers of God's people than there is to any dollar figure. That's what we solicit more than anything."
Pastor Peck summarizes their experience: "God's hand was at work in all this. I see it as an opportunity to exalt the name of Jesus in planting our church. I want people to see that the Adventist Church has a gospel message to proclaim."
Dakota Adventist Academy (DAA) students and staff had already witnessed for God to the Fargo and Moorhead communities. In anticipation of the flood, every student and all but four staff members journeyed to the Red River Valley from Bismarck. They joined other volunteers, including Dakota youth from as far away as Grand Forks and Dickinson, in filling an amazing 500,000 sandbags in the Fargo area and several thousand more in Moorhead. They returned to DAA exhausted, but with a gratifying sense of accomplishment for serving a community in need.
Dakota Conference President Neil Biloff has set up a fund for cash contributions toward the Peck family's needs. Donations marked "Peck Family Assistance Fund" may be mailed to: Dakota Conference, P. O. Box 520, Pierre, SD 57501.
*To view the CNN video, click here.