A pastor in Ferguson said he prayed to God to stop a group of armed and masked men from robbing his church during Sunday service. Pastor Marquaello Futrell of the All Creation Family Church told KSDK that the interaction occurred on February 12.
Futrell, who is also a former St. Louis police officer, said he resorted to prayer after he spotted the unusual activity in his church. The incident was also broadcast live on the church’s Facebook page.
One of the alleged would-be thieves is believed to have entered the church first, carrying two bags. The man also spoke with the Director of Children Services. But, Futrell stated that he got skeptical right away.
“I immediately just had the hairs on the back of my neck I’m like, ‘OK, something’s about to happen,’” the pastor said, adding that he also asked the director to “lock the doors and keep the children safe.”
The four unknown males who eventually entered the church were also disguised. “As a former cop, I instantly spotted their waistbands and thought, ‘There’s something there,'” Futrell remembered.
The pastor also said one of his worshippers observed a member of the group drop a gun. But Futrell went ahead with the service because he didn’t want to cause alarm among his congregations or alert them that the police were on their way to the church.
“I immediately directed my media team to zoom in on them because I knew we needed some face recognition,” Futrell told KSDK. The pastor also confronted the men and told them he still had “a cop anointing,” the Facebook Livestream of the service showed.
“Don’t you play with me,” Futrell told the alleged would-be robbers. “I still got a cop anointing and I still know what’s going on, and I still know what’s about to happen. God’s about to change the plot of the enemy. Lift your voices and shout unto God for what he’s about to do.”
Futrell and the congregation eventually prayed for the men after they gave them the go-ahead. “See, that wasn’t so bad, brothers,” Futrell told the men afterward. “Thank you all for letting us pray for you. And we’re thankful that for whatever reason, the Lord let you all come here. That when you walked on the ground, you walked on Holy Ghost turf.”
“You stepped foot on All Creation parking lot. You encountered the move of the Holy Ghost and I just believe that you all will never be the same again,” Futrell told them.
Futrell also told the news outlet that he believed the men “felt the power of God lifted in their hands, then they left.” The pastor added that his actions were a combination of instincts and prayer.
“The Bible speaks of watch and pray, so while we’re being spiritual, I’m also watching around, trying to protect the congregants,” he said, adding that he hopes pastors and churches learn from the incident.
“How is it going to look if there’s an intruder, how are we going to protect our children, background checks, all of the above,” said Futrell.
According to the Ferguson Police Department, the four men fled in a black Dodge charger with tinted windows. They have yet to be found.
“I just heard the Lord say, ‘This is what happens when you illegally trespass,’” Futrell said, per New York Post. “That when the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard. The flood will never be greater than the standard.”