Retired NBA player Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, died in a helicopter crash on Sunday morning. Seven additional victims also died.
Fr. David Barnes, the Director of the Catholic Newman Center at Boston University, revealed that Kobe Bryant attended Mass on Sunday morning at Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Newport Beach just before his death. Fr. Jeremy Daniel Paulin, pastor of St. Mary’s parish in Alton, Ill., shared Barnes’ full post.
Here’s the post below:
Fr. Paulin’s Facebook post reads, “‘As sad as Kobe’s death is, a friend texted me today to tell me that a friend of hers attends the same Catholic Church as Kobe and saw him this morning at Mass.
“There can be nothing more consoling to those who mourn than to know that a loved one worshipped God right before his death because worshipping God is what heaven is. Go to Mass. Go to Mass. Go to Mass.’
“Thank you, Fr. David Barnes, for sharing this. May Kobe, his daughter and all who died in the crash rest in God’s peace.”
Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church spokeswoman Julie Hermes also confirmed “the late basketball legend slipped in at the back…and left early to avoid disturbing the other parishioners.”
“He attended the 7am mass prior to going to the Orange County John Wayne Airport,” Hermes said. “I imagine he went straight to the airport, because the mass was 7-8 am. I’m told generally 7 am was his Mass.”
“He was very discreet,” Hermes said. “He would come in and stay at the back, and his family too, and then he would usually leave a little earlier prior to the very end of the service.
“He was very much loved at the church, and he was very devout, very dedicated to his faith.”
Here’s her tweet below:
Gordon’s full tweet reads, “I recently saw Kobe Bryant at Mass. / Whatever you think of him, he was a poor sinner. Today, a mother goes to bed without her husband and one of her daughters. Praying for all the named and unnamed victims of today’s crash.”
She also added photo with a quote from Bryant. The quote reads, “The one thing that really helped me during that process–I’m Catholic, I grew up Catholic–was talking to a priest.”
Another twitter user commented on Gordon’s post. She said he attended the early morning Mass on Sunday.
Here’s the tweet below:
The full post reads, “My friend Mary goes to his church and confirmed he was at 7 am Mass this morning. He and his family were a part of that parish community and need prayers. We don’t know the state of his soul. I feel horribly for everyone affected. His poor wife and other daughters 😰🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽 RIP”.
Let us pray for all the souls involved in this horrific tragedy!