Good Shepherd Community Church was packed for Tony Silva and Laura Dyal-Silva's memorial service yesterday. Powerful tributes were paid to both Tony and Laura, and the Gospel was presented clearly and powerfully.
Press Coverage Update
- KATU ran a story just after the memorial.
- The Oregonian printed a story with the help of staff and faculty here at Multnomah.
In closing I have included a eulogy that was shared at the service by Dr. Karl Kutz.
As students come and go each year, they leave a lasting impact upon my life. I find myself immensely proud of them as I see their interaction in the classroom, witness their passion for God, and hear what they are learning through the struggles of life. In the process they touch me just as much as I touch them. Naturally there are some who, for some reason or another, I get to know more closely - and Laura was one of those people. Although Laura began taking classes at Multnomah only this last Fall, I had the privilege of getting to know her several years ago.
My first encounters with Laura were second-hand . . . through conversations with Bobby. Bobby was in many of my classes and as we talked after class about theology or life, inevitably he would mention Laura. From the way that he spoke of her, the way that he honored, loved, and trusted her, I could tell that she was a remarkable young woman. Her opinions mattered, their purpose was a shared vision, ... she was truly a cherished companion.
When I finally met Laura I could not help but be warmed by her presence. No one could; her smile was contagious. It was always such an encouragement to look out into the classroom and see her smile and attentive eyes. Her comments and questions revealed an inquisitive mind and an eagerness to learn. She was engaging and focused and I know that in study groups with students she kept everyone on task. I can attest to her delightful, subtle sense of humor and a love for life that thrived on adventure and the discovery of new things. But by far what stood out the most to me was how I saw her encourage those around her and reach out in a way that reflected genuine interest, patience, and love. Ministry was not something that Laura did; it was simply an extension of who she was.
As I think of all the things that Laura could yet have done, the lives that she would yet have touched, her tragic death is such a loss. But I cannot help but be reminded that on this path of life God does not always lead us along through-streets. He sometimes guides us through dead ends because the journey is often more important than reaching many of our destinations. And Laura traveled well. All of us that encountered her along the way have been enriched by having known her and we will all deeply miss her.
Link to original story.