On Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 12), Pastor Marquaello Futrell of All Creation Family Church in Ferguson, Missouri, used prayer to divert would-be robbers from going through with their plan during the middle of the Sunday morning worship service.
Futrell, who served as a St. Louis police officer for 10 years, told a local news station that the hairs on the back of neck of his neck stood up when a man walked into the church carrying two bags and started speaking with the church’s Children Services Director. In that moment, Futrell’s cop intuition told him, “something’s about to happen.”
After telling the Children Services Director to lock the doors so the children would be safe, four masked men walked into the worship service and sat down.
“Me being a former police officer, I immediately noticed their waistbands, I’m like, ‘There’s something there,’” Futrell told the reporter. One church member saw one of the men drop their gun on the floor.
In the church’s livestream video, the pastor can be seen remaining calm and continuing the service as normal, so as to not create a panic amongst the congregation.
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Futrell also didn’t want to tip off the would-be robbers to the fact that the authorities were on their way. Instead, he inconspicuously directed his media team to zoom in on the assailants in an attempt to capture their faces.
As Futrell was praying for people throughout the congregation, he approached the four men and asked, “What’s your name?”
After the four young men told the pastor their names, he asked, “Who sent you out here?”
“You all just saw the church and decided to come,” Futrell continued.
“Talk to me,” he further nudged.
Futrell then told the congregation to praise God for them coming, to which they obliged. The pastor then started to raise his voice as if he were preaching a sermon, telling everyone in the sanctuary that God was going to change the devil’s plans.
“I said praise God that God sent them in here,” Futrell preached. “That what the devil meant for evil—you messing with a Marquaello Antonio Futrell—God’s gonna turn. Don’t you play with me. 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 voice and shout unto God for what he’s about to do.”
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The four young men remained in their seats watching the pastor as he spoke. Futrell then asked to pray for them. Men of the church then surrounded the young assailants and laid hands on them and bowed their heads while the congregation joined in praying for them.
“I believe they felt the power of God lifting their hands and then they left,” Futrell said. “The Bible speaks of watch and pray, so while we’re being spiritual, I’m also watching around, trying to protect the congregants.”