Never in his twenty-seven years of pastoral work had Bryon ever encountered anything quite like the situation he found himself in with Brent and Lori. When he placed his hands on Lori’s stomach yesterday to bless their unborn child, he had been immediately overcome by a sense of dread and doom like nothing he had ever experienced. That episode, combined with the revelations from Brent regarding the nature of the attack, had left Bryon unnerved and shaken. Having received his theological training at the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth in 1984, Bryon was well-versed in Church doctrine dealing with the supernatural, Devil worship, demonic possession, and so forth, but he had never expected it to hit close so home. Bryon had a very strong opinion about the abortion issue and it was much more than just the doctrine of his church. Fundamentally and personally, he would not condone or support an abortion. God created life; it was not up to man to take that life. In Brent and Lori’s situation, they had chosen or at least Lori had chosen not to abort when it was much earlier in the pregnancy. Now they were just a few days or perhaps even hours away from giving birth to a child with potentially demonic connections, a child that the mother wanted and the father did not. This was an extremely difficult situation and Byron knew he was going to have to take action. He also worried that he was not capable of handling such a unique situation properly, or if there even was a proper way to handle it. He picked up the phone and dialled a pastor friend of his from another county about two hours east of Cheyenne. Pastor Jim Sigardson was a good friend as well as a colleague, as the two of them had been in seminary together and they had remained close through the years. He trusted Jim with anything, and vice versa. They had leaned on each other for advice over the years when dealing with difficult issues with church members. In one case in particular, Jim had a church deacon investigated for child pornography after he had discovered graphic images on the church office computer one morning. Someone had been viewing the images on the computer the night before and had somehow forgotten to close out the web browser. When he called Bryon for advice before he called the police, Bryon suggested he do some detective work on his own to try to identify the perpetrator before all hell broke loose when the police got involved. Sometimes these things could get so out of control the collateral damage could bring down the church entirely.
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