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Pastor preaches message of hope to disaster-weary neighbors in Montecito




MONTECITO, CA - JANUARY 11: Travis Zehntner comforts Teresa Drenick, among belongings of her sister Rebecca Riskin was killed in the mudslide along San Ysidro Creek on January 11, 2018 in Montecito, California. 17 people have died and hundreds hundreds of homes have been destroyed or damaged after massive mudslides crashed through Montecito, California early Tuesday morning. (Photo by Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
MONTECITO, CA - JANUARY 11: Travis Zehntner comforts Teresa Drenick, among belongings of her sister Rebecca Riskin was killed in the mudslide along San Ysidro Creek on January 11, 2018 in Montecito, California. 17 people have died and hundreds hundreds of homes have been destroyed or damaged after massive mudslides crashed through Montecito, California early Tuesday morning. (Photo by Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Brian van der Brug/LA Times via Getty Images

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Members of the Montecito community gathered to grieve this weekend. Devastating mudslides have claimed 20 lives; four people are still missing. Some found peace in candlelight vigils, others at their neighborhood church.

It can be difficult to make sense of any tragedy — especially one that changes so much so quickly. But this weekend, that task fell to a handful of local faith leaders like pastor Peter Buehler. Buehler's Presbyterian church in Santa Barbara became an assistance center last week, helping people locate missing loved ones. This Sunday, he delivered the sermon.

The sermon was called "Remember Your Baptism." Buehler says the Biblical story of Jesus' baptism teaches a valuable lesson for people facing trials and tribulations. 

The scene of his baptism was when he was pretty much anonymous standing in line waiting to be baptized by John the Baptist, that's deeply meaningful to us. He's just like us, standing with us. 

When we remember our baptism, we remember his presence in our lives. That's powerful support in times like these when, you know, we're just getting a hold of where we're at, what we're feeling. 



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