Creswell teen’s death under investigation
The Lane County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the death of a 16-year-old Creswell boy whose cause of death is unknown and whose family apparently belongs to a church that believes illnesses and injuries should be treated with prayer rather than medical care.
Austin Lewis Sprout, a junior at Creswell High School and a member of the school’s basketball team, died Tuesday of unknown causes pending an autopsy, the family said in an obituary notice faxed to The Register-Guard on Thursday.
A graveside service is planned for next Tuesday at the Creswell Pioneer Cemetery, followed by a dinner at the General Assembly and the Church of the First Born, according to the obituary.
The General Assembly and the Church of the First Born has a long history of controversial deaths related to healing by prayer, according to the Rick Ross Institute, a New Jersey-based Internet archive of information about “cults, destructive cults, controversial groups and movements.”
The General Assembly and the Church of the First Born lists a Springfield congregation with a Eugene address and a congregation in Monroe in Linn County, according to various websites.
None of Sprout’s immediate family members listed in the obituary could be reached for comment late Thursday.