Saint Peter Claver Church prays for choir director injured in car crash

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The Saint Peter Claver Catholic Church community in Lexington is praying for the recovery of one of its one.

“It would seem best to come together in the easy times, in the joyous times, but it’s also a sign of testament that you can come together in the hardest times, when you don’t know the sun’s there you have to come together under the clouds” said Father Norman Fischer, Parish Priest for Saint Peter Claver Catholic Church.

73-year-old James Leny Thomas, known just as Leny by family and friends, has been the Choir Director at the church for the past 20 years. But, on Thursday night he was involved in a serious car accident.

Lexington Police say a man driving a gray Dodge Avenger crashed into a light pole Thursday around 8:15 P.M. on Mercer Road, causing a gas line to rupture.

Police say the man was entrapped in his car and had suffered serious injuries, but that the medical team said they believed he would survive…and that man was Leny.

Father Norman Fischer says Leny has lost his left hand up to his elbow, has swelling in his brain and rib damage.

“Although he’s gone through this horrible condition, we have some hope he’ll get some of those opportunities to still have his life, which we are grateful for, we are just so grateful for his life, and just to be with him and him to be with us would be our greatest answer” said Father Fischer.

Police say they don’t know how or why Leny crashed.

Leny’s friends are in disbelief as he had just left choir practice right before the accident.

“And Leny was fine, best choir practice we’ve had since we’ve been back from the pandemic and it was just sad to hear that he had been hurt in any sense” said one of Leny’s friends and fellow Choir Director, Michael Elery.

But they are coming together to do what they know best, to pray for his health and recovery, and to let him know they’ll be there for the tough road he’ll face ahead.

“We want Leny to know that he’s well loved and well respected and well thought of and he’s a pillar of our church, of our church community, and Leny has been with us for well over 20 years and he will always be special to all of us,” added Elery.

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