Student missionary dies in bus accident

By July 14, 2008

(MNN) — Near Abancay, Peru on July 5, student missionary Gregory Gomez
IV of Natchez, Miss. was killed in a tragic bus
accident. He had been researching
unreached people groups with International Mission Board's REAP South team for
the summer. 

Lori, another IMB student missionary, and Claudia, a
national translator, received minor injuries in the accident. 

Gomez, 22, recently graduated from the University of Mississippi
with a degree in mechanical engineering. He was living near St. Louis, Mo. before his service in Peru. He deferred a good job offer in order to go
to Peru,
said Mo Baker, director of the Baptist Student Union at Ole Miss. 

"Greg was doing what he considered to be the will of God,"
Baker said. "He knew God wanted the nations to hear the Gospel, and he was
willing to forsake or delay a career — opportunities to make money — so that he
could fulfill a mission to preach the Gospel to all the nations. This was his
one big opportunity to do that, and that's why he chose to go. He went out doing
what he felt called to do."

Gomez had been employed by the Nestlé Purina
PetCare Product
Technology Center
as an engineering intern. The team on which he served in Peru
is implementing a church-planting strategy called the Rapid Entry
Advance Plan, or REAP. The
strategy aims to establish indigenous church-planting movements among thousands
of South American people groups that have no viable access to the Gospel. 

"Our researchers do all the footwork to provide us with the
information we need to know what areas to enter, how long it takes to get there
and what we're going to find when we get there," said missionary Kathy Weaver.
"It's been the crowning glory of our ministry to have these students here every
summer – they're such an asset. It overwhelms me to see the spiritual depth
that they have."

Gomez was also a member of Bethel
Baptist Church
in Troy, Ill.,
and had attended North Oxford Baptist
Church in Oxford, Miss.
He had served on the Baptist Student Union leadership team as campus
chapter president of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, vice
president of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity, and a member of the Engineering Student
Body Executive Council. He was involved
in discipleship and small-group Bible studies. 

He is survived by his parents, Elida and Gregory Gomez III,
of Glen Carbon, Ill.,
and two sisters. Funeral arrangements
are pending.

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