MANAUS, Brazil, March 16, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — A video of an LDS missionary who decided not to turn the other cheek, and instead beat up an armed attacker trying to rob him, has gone viral after surveillance footage of the exchanged surfaced.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has confirmed that the two young missionaries caught on the grainy video serve in the Brazil — Manaus mission.
The missionaries, seen wearing dark pants, white shirts, ties and black name placards, are shown with other pedestrians on a sidewalk when a motorcycle carrying two men rolls to a stop.
The motorcycle passenger dismounts and retrieves what appears to be a gun from his waistband area of his shorts.
While the other pedestrians and one missionary submit, the defiant missionary wrestles his attacker, gets control of the gun, and points it at the attempted robber.
As the first attacker retreats, the motorcycle driver steps forward to try to retrieve the gun, which the missionary tosses over a tall, chain link fence.
The missionary and the driver then engage in hand-to-hand combat, and the driver suffers multiple face punches and a kick from the missionary.
After a bystander pulls the two apart, the driver flees. The missionary chases the man a few more steps, then stops, breathing heavily, as evidenced by the movement of his name placard.
The LDS Church has not identified the missionaries, but did say they have been temporarily removed from the area. They will not be facing disciplinary action. The person who posted the video on Facebook said the plucky proselytizer is an American.
LDS church spokesman Eric Hawkins released the following statement to the media: “We are grateful that this incident did not end tragically, either for the missionaries or the other individuals involved. The guidance given to missionaries is to avoid conflict. Every situation is unique, and as adults, missionaries must make decisions about their safety. In this case, the assailant had a weapon and the missionary reacted in the moment to protect his life and that of his companion.”