News Release: Billy Graham chaplains helping victims of Berlin terrorist attack

Two specially trained Canadians part of multinational team traveling to Germany

Calgary, Alberta – Dec. 21, 2016 – A team of crisis-trained Billy Graham Rapid Response Team (RRT) chaplains is preparing to fly to Germany to provide emotional and spiritual support to shocked and heartbroken Berlin residents, after 12 people were killed and 49 injured in an attack by ISIS terrorists on Monday, Dec. 19.

“We’re praying for the people of Berlin, and when our chaplains arrive we will provide Christ’s compassion, care, and love as we minister to grieving and hurting people there,” said Merle Doherty, manager of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association of Canada’s RRT chaplains.

The attack took place when a terrorist drove a stolen truck through a Berlin Christmas market, running down shoppers.

In response to the tragedy, two Canadian RRT chaplains—husband and wife Harvey and Selma Boldt—will join an American chaplain in working with churches in Berlin and with the local office of Samaritan’s Purse to provide emotional and spiritual support to grieving residents.

“We hope to strike up conversations with people and help them find a moment of peace and compassion in the midst of their grief,” said Harvey. He and Selma are well-equipped for their urgently needed roles after receiving extensive RRT training, past RRT deployments, having previously lived in Germany for 25 years, and able to speak fluent German.

This will be the fourth time in 2016 that RRT chaplains from Canada have been deployed to Europe to comfort terrorist victims, after attacks in Brussels, Belgium in March; Nice, France in July; and Munich, Germany, also in July.

“We are grateful for the partnership of Canadians in supporting the Rapid Response Team chaplain ministry through their donations and prayers,” said BGEA Canada executive director Fred Weiss. “Their partnership with us has enabled our chaplains to provide emotional and spiritual aid to traumatized, grieving people in Canada, the U.S., and overseas in times of crisis and tragedy. In each situation, the chaplains offer the compassion and hope of Jesus Christ.”

Donations Needed
To support the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s chaplain efforts, please visit (click on “Donate Now”) or call 1-800-293-3717.

The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association of Canada, established in 1953, partners with churches and Christian communities across Canada and worldwide to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ in word and deed. Through relevant language and methods, we share the saving message of Jesus to spiritually searching people of all ages and cultures. To learn more, please visit


Media inquiries:
Frank King, News Media Relations Manager
Billy Graham Evangelistic Association of Canada
1-800-293-3717, 403-990-0161 (mobile) or [email protected]