Church members spread ashes of unknown infant after discovery - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Church members spread ashes of unknown infant after discovery

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A mysterious discovery at a local church, sparked a very moving response. Someone left the ashes of an unknown infant at Park Road Baptist Church.

After Sunday morning services, church members held a funeral for the infant and prayed for it's unknown grieving parents who took an unusual step toward closure.​

"This child did have a name and his name or her name is beloved," said Amy Jacks Dean. "Beloved child of God."

An urn no larger than a salt shaker sitting on top of a handwritten note.

"No money for proper burial please take care of me," recalled Russ Dean. 

The urn, a toy and a crucifix were found in the Park Road Baptist Church columbarium three weeks ago.

Russ and Amy Jacks Dean, co-pastors of the church, were left guessing.

Who did the ashes belong to, and what was story behind them?

"We were trying to put a puzzle together without all the pieces," said Jacks Dean.

After Sunday service, more than 100 people gathered around the small urn. 

"It just felt right for our church to be together in that moment and share the pain," said Jacks Dean.

The group sent up prayer, sang songs and told the story of a young child who passed away too soon and a family left grieving. 

"A lot of tears," said Dean about those in his congregation. "We know those represent the tears of people who have been in a similar situation."

Although the story of finding the urn was something out of the ordinary for the Deans, eight years ago, church members spread the ashes of another unknown person in their garden.

That person said Pastor Dean, like the ashes of the child, is known only to God.

The Deans say the name plate will take a few weeks to make before it is added to the wall. They hope the parents find comfort in knowing their request was honored.

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