Kalley Heiligenthal stomped her feet and waved her arms, dancing her way from one side of the bright-lit stage to the other.
“Come alive, come alive!” the congregants at Bethel Church in Redding, California, shouted in expectation as they clapped and sang praises.
The faithful shared these scenes on Instagram Tuesday night (Dec. 17) as they prayed for Heiligenthal’s 2-year-old daughter, Olive Alayne, to be raised from the dead.
Heiligenthal, a worship leader and songwriter for Bethel Music, announced on social media Sunday that her daughter had stopped breathing and been pronounced dead.
Since then, she has publicly called for people to pray that her girl be resurrected.
“We are asking for bold, unified prayers from the global church to stand with us in belief that He will raise this little girl back to life,” she said on Sunday through Instagram. “It’s time for her to come to life.”
Redding police are investigating the death, as is standard when someone so young dies, said Redding police Sgt. Brian Torum. The case was reported to police as a medical issue about 6 a.m. Saturday, Torum said.
The child’s body is at the coroner’s office, Torum said.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help with “the unforeseeable expenses the Heiligenthal family will incur, medical and otherwise.” As of Thursday afternoon, more than $50,000 had been collected.
Supporters of Heiligenthal have spread the hashtags #wakeupolive and #victoriousawakening across social media and described their prayers as radical worship and a spiritual awakening.
“Come out of that grave in Jesus’ name!” they have said.
Arlene Sánchez-Walsh, a professor of religious studies at Azusa Pacific University, said that in this case, worshippers are not conducting prayers for the girl to go to heaven as is common after a death.
“They’re praying for this girl to come back to her body,” Sánchez-Walsh said.
The Bible mentions several cases where people were raised from the dead. In 1 Kings, the prophet Elijah brings the son of a widow back from the grave, after the child died from an illness. In the New Testament, Jesus raises two children from the dead, as well as his friend Lazarus.
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Source: Religion News Service