Leaders of the Eagle Christian Center in Newlands, South Africa, said the congregation’s “faith remains unshaken” after a young preacher, known as Prophet Dwayne Gordon, was shot dead and two others were wounded during a robbery at the church on Friday.
“At Eagle Christian Center, our faith remains unshaken. We believe that in the face of adversity, we must come together as a community, demonstrating love, compassion, and unwavering support for one another. We will continue to provide spiritual guidance and strength to our congregation during this challenging time,” church officials said in a statement on Facebook Saturday.
The church said Gordon, who was a special guest speaker for their Restoration Conference, which was set to run from Oct. 6–8, was killed after six gunmen entered the church and began robbing members on Friday.
“We were confronted by a tragic and harrowing situation. Six armed individuals entered our sacred place of worship, robbing members of their belongings, tragically taking the life of our guest speaker, Prophet Dwayne Gordon,” the statement of the church led by Pastor Mervyn and Maria Campher continued.
In addition to Gordon’s death and two others injured in the attack, the church said many women and children were “severely traumatized.”
“We are devastated by this loss and extend our deepest condolences to Prophet Dwayne Gordon’s family and friends during this incredibly difficult time. We ask that you keep us all in your thoughts and prayers as we navigate this profound grief,” the church said.
Faranaaz Mosale, the wife of 39-year-old Sebastian Mosale, who is one of the two individuals injured and recovering in hospital, told SABC News she is terrified.
“It’s terrible, I never knew. I always heard of the shootings and stuff. But Friday, when I saw it happening in front of me, it got close to home,” she said.
A 45-minute recording of the service which was livestreamed on several social media platforms including YouTube, shows members of the church worshiping for about 28 minutes before Gordon was excitedly welcomed to the pulpit.
“I don’t know about you, but I can already feel the presence of God,” Gordon said from the pulpit as the congregation acknowledged that they had felt it too.
He soon asked the church’s choir to help him sing “The Steadfast Love” and they worshiped together again.
“Great is thy faithfulness. If I was you, I would prophesy to my neighbor and say, ‘neighbor, good morning,’” he said.
“The Bible declares that whenever the enemy would come in like a flood, the Bible said the Spirit of the Lord will raise a mighty standard. Weeping may endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning,” he declared, whipping the congregation into a rapturous frenzy.
“Someone’s season of joy has just entered into this place,” Gordon said.
He then called the church a spiritual portal that would give rise to the prophecy, but he would try his best to behave. He greeted the Holy Ghost and was in the middle of greeting the church’s pastor around the 40-minute mark of the recording when he is shown with a stunned look on his face and steps back from the pulpit.
Moments after that motion, terrified screams could be heard coming from the congregation as Gordon stayed frozen in the recording until the camera appeared to get knocked over and at least two shots were heard going off.
Eagle Christian Center said they are “cooperating fully with law enforcement to ensure that those responsible for this heinous act are brought to justice.”
“As a church, we will also be taking additional security measures to safeguard our congregation and ensure their safety during future gatherings,” the church said.
While there are currently no official motives given for the attack on the church and Gordon’s murder, a Zambian televangelist based in South Africa, Prophet Isaac Kabamba, well-known on social media as Prophet DD Isaac, alleged that Gordon’s murder was orchestrated by a fellow minister who was threatened by his growing popularity.
“The individual responsible for the demise of my son is another prophet of a same ethnicity, driven by the fear of losing his congregation. Prophet Dwayne Gordon, nurtured under my guidance, was known to me as an exceptionally devoted young prophet, ardently devoted to Jesus Christ,” he wrote on Facebook. “It is truly heart-wrenching to witness the tragic waste of his life. His spirit will inflict anguish upon any individual implicated in his untimely demise.”
Kabamba who is a leader and founder of Holy Ghost Embassy Church with branches in South Africa and other parts of the world, said Gordon was previously shot in the leg at his Randburg branch but he survived.
“I vividly recall the distressing incident that transpired in South Africa. Malevolent forces orchestrated an intrusion into our sacred sanctuary, located in our Kyasands Randburg branch.
They callously targeted my son, discharging a firearm that struck his leg. Miraculously, he managed to survive,’” Kabamba said, alleging that South Africa “harbors a propensity for extinguishing the lives of their own prophets.”
“May the indomitable spirit of Prophet Dwyane Gordon wage war against all those involved. To all congregations, prophets, apostles, pastors, and evangelists, I implore you to fortify your places of worship and ensure the presence of security personnel in your vicinity,” he said. “This very reason compelled me to return to my homeland, Zambia, where we could find solace and sanctuary.”
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