I met Jay Keddy several years ago when his son, Allastair, graduated from Heritage college. Although Jay and I only talked briefly in person, he regularly emailed me over the past few years.
Jay served as a deacon in the area of missions at West Highland Baptist Church in Hamilton. Having served in Africa for several years, Jay had a passion to support missionaries. He faithfully compiled a list of current prayer requests from the missionaries and organizations supported by the church. I regularly received an email from Jay asking how the believers at West Highland could pray for the ministry of Heritage.
I won’t be getting emails from Jay any longer. On December 2nd, he was killed as he rode his bike to the Wednesday night prayer meeting at church. His memorial service took place this morning in Hamilton.
Since hearing the news, my heart has been heavy for Jay’s wife and three kids. For his siblings and his mother. For his pastor and church family. For the children in the kindergarten class he taught at Prince of Wales Elementary School.
This sudden loss of a husband, father, son, brother, friend and teacher has left many with aching hearts and unanswered questions. Jay’s pastor, John Mahaffey told reporters from CBC news: “Even for people of faith, we wonder why God would allow something like this to happen.”
While I didn’t know Jay in a deeply personal way, I know that he was a rare kind of Christian man. You don’t often find a man so committed to the cause of missions or so passionate about prayer. Even more rare is a man who passionately combines the two by mobilizing people to pray for missions. Jay was that kind of man. He will be deeply missed.
I’d ask you to join those of us praying for the Keddy family at this time of grief. Pray that “the God of all comfort” (2 Corinthians 1:3-5) would strengthen and sustain them. Pray that God would raise up other godly men and women to carry on Jay’s legacy of prayer and mission.