Posted on | October 8, 2012 | Comments Off
— Robert Stacy McCain (@rsmccain) October 8, 2012
When the cellphone rang this morning and I saw the name on caller ID, it was a pleasant surprise: “Sam, how the heck are you, man?”
Pastor Sam Childers, the Harley-riding missionary whose amazing life story inspired the film Machine Gun Preacher, caught me up on his latest activities and asked what I was up to. After I told him I’ve been out covering the presidential campaign, Pastor Sam told me how some reporters had kept after him about crazy rumors that he was diamond smuggler or a gun runner, and he threatened to run for president himself:
“There’s nobody on this earth, including Christ, who has ever done anything good that people didn’t come against him. Nobody. And I made the comment the other week: If they keep coming up with any more garbage or accusations, I’m going to run for president in 2016.”
Don’t doubt him for a minute. He’s done crazier things than that before, but he was laughing about it, especially when he said some other reporters had actually taken him seriously. Pastor Sam is truly unique — sui generis — and is politically independent.
Of course, he’s a Bible-believing Christian fundamentalist, but Pastor Sam comes from a blue-collar background and has a natural skepticism toward politics and politicians, so he’s not officially part of the “Religious Right” and, indeed, his courageous missionary work in Sudan and Uganda has won him the admiration of many Hollywood liberals. As a matter of fact, in 2007-08, the candidate who most interested him was Democrat John Edwards.
Pastor Sam’s vote for Mitt Romney? Yeah, that’s actual news.
Pastor Sam is currently preparing to go back to Africa and his Angels of East Africa ministry is raffling off a motorcycle to raise money, and God bless everyone who clicks that link and gives. He is a righteous servant of the Lord, no matter what Vanity Fair says about him.
Sam was telling me about the smears, which really do annoy him, but he’s learned to laugh about it: “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” Indeed. And never doubt the miracles God can do.
UPDATE: Jai Simon reminds us that Sam Childers is the “only man Chuck Norris fears.” Trust me, you never want to see Sam angry.