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Kirsten Wolcott: The Story Behind the Headlines

Nampa, Idaho (October 14, 2010) — On the morning of November 19, 2009, Kirsten Wolcott was murdered while jogging on the Micronesian island of Yap where she served as a student missionary. The news devastated her family and friends, and shocked the church around the world. Now Pacific Press® has just released a book by fellow Southern Adventist University student, Rainey H. Park, entitled Love, Kirsten, which tells the gut-level story behind the headlines.

In this compelling true account of her life and death as a student missionary, Kirsten is seen as a real-life, warm and winsome young twenty year old who was passionate about people and about serving God. With the family's blessing, Park has incorporated e-mail correspondence between Kirsten and her family, as well as journal entries-including an entry on the day of her death.

As a missionary book, Love, Kirsten is substantially different from the typical missionary book. It is primarily about a young woman who loved the Lord, who dealt with real challenges in knowing God's will, who had personal struggles fighting anorexia, and whose life was dramatically cut short.

"I couldn't put this book down," said Gary Krause, Director of Adventist Mission in Silver Spring, Maryland. "It's a story of redemption in the face of incomprehensible tragedy; of an imperfect, but beautiful Christian young woman who loved much and was greatly loved; of the terrible loss of a twenty-year-old martyr in running shoes."

Author Rainey H. Park will graduate in December from Southern Adventist University. She and Kirsten were classmates and although she didn't know Kirsten personally, she felt that Kirsten's story was one that needed to be told. She has also included an interview with the self-confessed murderer and an afterword by Kirsten's father, Hollis Wolcott. Kirsten Wolcott didn't get the chance to tell her own story - in Love, Kirsten, Park tells it for her. Not all stories have a happy ending, at least, not this side of Heaven. Yet we know that when we stand at the beginning of eternity, Kirsten's story will end gloriously.

Assisting Park as co-author is Southern Adventist University journalism professor Andy Nash. Nash has written numerous magazine articles, is a popular columnist for Adventist Review®, and is the author of Paper God (Pacific Press® Publishing Association, 2010) his personal memoir.

Love, Kirsten is available at any local Adventist Book Center®, or by calling (800) 765-6955. It is also available online at