A controversial South African pastor who received backlash last year for feeding his congregants snakes and rats as a test of their faith has contrived a new way of "demonstrating the power of God" — by driving over people with a car.
Pastor Penuel Mnguni of the End Times Disciples Ministries in Soshanguve was featured in a series of photos posted to the ministry's Facebook page, which purport to show the self-proclaimed prophet conducting a "demonstration of power" by driving his car on top of sleeping congregants.
"Congregants witnessed the power of God," the ministry's Facebook post reads. "The man of God prophet Penuel demonstrated the power of God by running over two members of the congregants: He commanded both of the members to sleep followed by moving the car over them."
The pictures, which were supposedly taken on Friday night, show Mnguni in a blue car as he drives over cardboard placed on top of the "sleeping" congregants. The post claims that Mnguni then commanded the congregants to wake up while the car was on top of their bodies.
"He then asked them if they felt any pain," the post explains. "And their response was 'We do not feel anything.'"
After the pastor reversed the car and backed off the congregants, the post claims that the congregants began dancing and praising God along with other congregants who witnessed the ordeal.
"He taught about the power and the ability of the Spirit (God)," the post reads. "As noted in Mark 16:16 'to those who believe, they shall be saved and those rejecting this power would perish.'"
"We have died and we have risen with Christ from the dead and therefore our standard is not of this world combining all pains and feelings," the post continues. "We cannot speak of a Powerful God yet not seeing His Power."
The South African government had previously accused Mnguni of "abusing" the faith of his congregants after he fed members snakes that he claimed God turned into chocolate.
After the ministry posted photos on Facebook last summer showing Mnguni feeding snakes to his congregants, he was arrested on charges of animal cruelty.
As Mnguni's preaching style has rubbed many in the Soshanguve community the wrong way, the tent housing the End Times Disciples Ministries was burned down last August by a South African militant group known as the Economic Freedom Fighters.
In November of last year, Mnguni went missing after South Africa's Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities summoned him in response to a number of complaints filed against his ministry. He eventually turned up and the commission ruled in February that he violated the country's bill of rights by feeding his congregants things like rats and snakes.
"No religion should belittle people and undermine people's dignity," the commission's deputy chairman David Mosoma said, according to ENCA. "It is unacceptable behaviour to feed the congregation rats, snakes and hair as Mnguni has done before. His actions contravene the Bill of Rights."
In light of the Facebook post showing Mnguni driving over his congregants, South Africa's Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities has again vowed to bring about legal action against Mnguni.
"He is bringing the religion into disrepute," the commission's head, Thoko Mkwanazi-Xaluvam, told News 24. "We will be going to court to say he is making Christianity look like a joke."
Mnguni is the understudy of another controversial pastor named Lesego Daniel of Rabboni Centre Ministries, who is known for having his congregants eat grass and drink gas.