Photo Gallery: Machine Gun Preacher
About 350 came Sunday to hear the so-called Machine Gun Preacher Sam Childers speak during the Lifepoint Church annual picnic at Red Hill Community Park in Rancho Cucamonga, "Violence does not glorify God," said former outlaw biker-turned-missionary Childers. "The God that we serve is not a God of violence."
Childers, 50, is the founder of Angels of East Africa, a group that has helped thousands of orphans and child soldiers in Africa. He's fought against the Lord's Resistance Army, a group described on his website as a brutal rebel militia responsible for kidnapping 30,000 children and killing hundreds of thousands of villagers.
"Don't look at what I've done, look at what you can do," said Childers. "It's not about what you do, it's about doing something." Angels of East Africa is currently building its fifth orphanage in Ethiopia. They've built two schools and have acquired a farm to teach irrigation and farming to natives. They also serve about 4,000 meals a day.
Attendees posed many questions to Childers regarding his life and his mission. The crowd was also introduced to a Sudanese boy named Walter who was rescued after surviving an ambush against his family. "Sam and his men came to rescue us and took us for treatment," said the boy to the crowd. Childers and his group travel to Colorado for another speaking engagement before returning home to Pennsylvania.
Childers' life inspired the 2011 movie "Machine Gun Preacher," starring Gerard Butler. "I'm a man that carries a message of hope, that Jesus Christ changed my life," said Childers to the crowd. "And if He can change me, imagine what He can do in your life."