Crocodile in murky waters

Crocodiles are known to use murky waters to hide from their prey before lunging on to shore in a surprise attack.


Even something as seemingly tranquil as a lakeside baptism can quickly turn into a gruesome occupational tragedy. Protestant pastor Docho Eshete had gathered his congregation on the banks of Lake Abaya in Ethiopia on an otherwise peaceful Sunday morning to welcome newcomers into the church with a baptism ceremony.

But the event went from holy to horrific when a large crocodile suddenly emerged from the murky waters, and savagely attacked Eshete as his congregation looked on in disbelief.

“He baptized the first person and passed on to another one,” recounted one resident of nearby Arba Minch to the BBC. “All of a sudden, a crocodile jumped out of the lake and grabbed the pastor.”

Stunned onlookers and local fishermen tried in vain to rescue the helpless clergyman, but to no avail. After clamping its powerful jaws firmly onto him, the crocodile performed a so-called “death roll”, in which the victim is violently spun around in circles. Fishermen on the scene used their nets to stop the animal from dragging the pastor into deeper water, but that point it was too late. His body was eventually recovered and taken ashore.

Baptism Risks

Protestant baptisms in Africa frequently take place in rivers or lakes, performed in the traditional manner of Christ’s immersion in the River Jordan by John the Baptist.

However, the notoriously murky reddish-brown waters of Ethiopia’s second largest lake are anything but calm and restive. They are home to many crocodiles, and tourists frequently flock to the area to get a look at imposing creatures. According to the Telegraph, a shortage of fish in Lake Abaya has caused crocodiles to become far more aggressive toward humans than ever before.

As it stands, hundreds of people are killed in crocodile attacks in Africa every year. A 90-year-old tourist was killed in January after crocodiles bit his inflatable boat and sank it. Last month, a crocodile in Zimbabwe attacked a woman just 5 days before her wedding – resulting in an amputated arm.

Church shooting in Texas

Since 1999, more than 91 people have been murdered in at least 22 church-related shootings. Church leaders are often among the victims.

Dangerous Business

Crocodile attacks aside, the occupational hazards associated with religious work are nothing new – and definitely not confined to the African continent.

History bursts with examples of people who’ve been persecuted due to their religious beliefs. And while things have certainly gotten better, we’re still left to contend with violent acts like church shootings that happen with seeming regularity here at home.

The November shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs that claimed 26 lives was just the latest in a string of horrific attacks targeting places of worship. Since 1999, more than 91 people have been murdered in at least 22 church-related shootings. Church leaders are often among the victims.

Dangers – whether prehistoric or modern – always lie beneath the deceptive calm.

 

17 comments

  1. T'Keren Valmaz says:

    One has to wonder, was it a lack of wisdom on the part of the man who chose the location, or an act of the divine putting a stop to something not meant to happen.

    1. Carl Elfstrom says:

      I don’t think God or Goddess cares anything about any religion or if anyone gets baptized or not. However, God may have had further plans in life for one or more of those people, and the minister may have had enough karmic debt from previous incarnations to warrant such an attack, or maybe he wasn’t as righteous in this life as he lead people to believe. Then again, if none of that applies to him, it may lead to his protection in a future life. The order and passage of time is only an illusion of this dimension.

      1. Rev. Rene L. says:

        There must be a reason the western world baptizes in-church. Even the Royal British family, although apparently with water from the river Jordan.

  2. Carl Elfstrom says:

    Research, people. Cover all bases. Especially in places where wild animals are known to live. You can’t say this is a religious event, so God will protect us. It was totally stupid. Faith without works is dead. That’s one point for the Catholics. They do it the safest. It doesn’t have to be done like Jesus or John the Baptist. Jesus didn’t baptize in crocodile filled waters. He never put God to the test, and if Christians are trying to follow in His foot steps they shouldn’t iether. That minister was leading those people to a horrible death, whether he meant to or not, and got what he deserved.

  3. John Owens says:

    Gotta be a traumatizing experience for all involved, except the crocodile. I’d never get close to that stream.

    1. John Owens says:

      Of course, the rest of the article kinda lends credence to persecution of people who call themselves Christian.

      1. Carl Elfstrom says:

        Sometimes some of the people who call themselves Christians deserve to be persecuted against. If they were truly spiritual people they’d shrug it off and not let it bother them. If not, they were justly punished.

  4. T'Keren Valmaz says:

    Fun fact, even the fictional nearly superhuman character Tarzan, a man that would grapple with a tiger and was capable of breaking its back bare handed knew better then to casually swim in croc territory. He recognized that in the water they were supreme and not to be challenged without dire need.

    I dont know about you but Id take that view of Tarzan’s and make it my own. Because seriously do not swim with crocs or walk your dogs near lakes or rivers where gators may be, that is just asking to be made into a meal.

    This is a super predator species largely unchanged for many millions of years. Sure with weapons we may kill them, but oh natural they are the masters of their domain and we more helpless then a horned bull that can stomp and gore.

    Unless your Steve Irwin, then again we all saw what happened to him when he treated a sting ray too casually.

  5. Barb says:

    Sometimes ‘good people die young’ lets believe he was a good person and the croc was just doing what crocs do !

  6. drrgrivera says:

    New International Version
    The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty.

    New Living Translation
    A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.

    English Standard Version
    The prudent sees danger and hides himself, but the simple go on and suffer for it.

    Berean Study Bible
    The prudent see danger and take cover, but the simple keep going and suffer the consequences.

    New American Standard Bible
    The prudent sees the evil and hides himself, But the naive go on, and are punished for it.

    King James Bible
    A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

    Christian Standard Bible
    A sensible person sees danger and takes cover, but the inexperienced keep going and are punished.

    Contemporary English Version
    When you see trouble coming, don’t be stupid and walk right into it–be smart and hide.

    Good News Translation
    Sensible people will see trouble coming and avoid it, but an unthinking person will walk right into it and regret it later.

    Holman Christian Standard Bible
    A sensible person sees danger and takes cover, but the inexperienced keep going and are punished.

    International Standard Version
    The prudent person sees trouble ahead and hides, but the naive continue on and suffer the consequences.

    NET Bible
    A shrewd person sees danger and hides himself, but the naive keep right on going and suffer for it.

    New Heart English Bible
    A prudent man sees danger, and hides himself; but the simple pass on, and suffer for it.

    Aramaic Bible in Plain English
    A prudent one sees an evil man being scourged and is powerfully instructed, but fools pass by him and suffer damage.

    GOD’S WORD® Translation
    Sensible people foresee trouble and hide [from it], but gullible people go ahead and suffer [the consequence].

    JPS Tanakh 1917
    A prudent man seeth the evil, and hideth himself; But the thoughtless pass on, and are punished.

    New American Standard 1977
    The prudent sees the evil and hides himself, But the naive go on, and are punished for it.

    Jubilee Bible 2000
    A prudent man foresees the evil and hides himself, but the simple pass on and receive hurt.

    King James 2000 Bible
    A prudent man foresees the evil, and hides himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

    American King James Version
    A prudent man foresees the evil, and hides himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

    American Standard Version
    A prudent man seeth the evil, and hideth himself; But the simple pass on, and suffer for it.

    Douay-Rheims Bible
    The prudent man saw the evil, and hid himself: the simple passed on, and suffered loss.

    Darby Bible Translation
    A prudent [man] seeth the evil, and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished.

    English Revised Version
    A prudent man seeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and suffer for it.

    Webster’s Bible Translation
    A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

    World English Bible
    A prudent man sees danger, and hides himself; but the simple pass on, and suffer for it.

    Young’s Literal Translation
    The prudent hath seen the evil, and is hidden, And the simple have passed on, and are punished.

    New International Version
    my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. “Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests; because you have ignored the law of your God, I also will ignore your children.

    New Living Translation
    My people are being destroyed because they don’t know me. Since you priests refuse to know me, I refuse to recognize you as my priests. Since you have forgotten the laws of your God, I will forget to bless your children.

    English Standard Version
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.

    Berean Study Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you as My priests. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your children.

    New American Standard Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being My priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.

    King James Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

    Christian Standard Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you from serving as my priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your sons.

    Contemporary English Version
    You priests have rejected me, and my people are destroyed by refusing to obey. Now I’ll reject you and forget your children, because you have forgotten my Law.

    Good News Translation
    My people are doomed because they do not acknowledge me. You priests have refused to acknowledge me and have rejected my teaching, and so I reject you and will not acknowledge your sons as my priests.

    Holman Christian Standard Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you from serving as My priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your sons.

    International Standard Version
    My people are destroyed because they lack knowledge of me. Because you rejected that knowledge, I will reject you as a priest for me. Since you forget the Law of your God, I will also forget your children.

    NET Bible
    You have destroyed my people by failing to acknowledge me! Because you refuse to acknowledge me, I will reject you as my priests. Because you reject the law of your God, I will reject your descendants.

    New Heart English Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you, that you may be no priest to me. Because you have forgotten your God’s law, I will also forget your children.

    GOD’S WORD® Translation
    I will destroy my people because they are ignorant. You have refused to learn, so I will refuse to let you be my priests. You have forgotten the teachings of your God, so I will forget your children.

    JPS Tanakh 1917
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; Because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to Me; Seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I also will forget thy children.

    New American Standard 1977
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being My priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.

    Jubilee Bible 2000
    My people were cut off because they lacked wisdom; because thou hast rejected wisdom, I will cast thee out of the priesthood; seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy sons.

    King James 2000 Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you, that you shall be no priest to me: because you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your children.

    American King James Version
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you, that you shall be no priest to me: seeing you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your children.

    American Standard Version
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I also will forget thy children.

    Douay-Rheims Bible
    My people have been silent, because they had no knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will reject thee, that thou shalt not do the office of priesthood to me: and thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I also will forget thy children.

    Darby Bible Translation
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; for thou hast rejected knowledge, and I will reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me; seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I also will forget thy children.

    English Revised Version
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I also will forget thy children.

    Webster’s Bible Translation
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

    World English Bible
    My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you, that you may be no priest to me. Because you have forgotten your God’s law, I will also forget your children.

    Young’s Literal Translation
    Cut off have been My people for lack of knowledge, Because thou knowledge hast rejected, I reject thee from being priest to Me, And thou forgettest the law of thy God, I forget thy sons, I also!

    1. Beatrice Marlowe says:

      You must be a Catholic priest that believes only Catholics will make it to Heaven! I don’t have any faith in a religion that prays to statues and not God through Jesus Christ! Amen!

  7. Cesar says:

    The Lord works in misterious ways!

  8. ProtectLives says:

    We are all creatures and children of God. Becoming Lunch for a Lizard demontrates the great faith of the Pastor – who otherwise would never be known by the world,
    except for this sensational shocking story of his death.

    May he find the Peace of Love in the afterlife that eluded him in this life.

  9. Gwendolyn Lord says:

    And sometimes s–t just happens,folks.

  10. Beatrice Marlowe says:

    I don’t believe God intended for the Pastor to be eaten! I don’t believe it was Karma from this life or another! That’s ridiculous and sounds like someone practicing witchcraft! Yes I’m a Preacher and also have a wonderful friend that practices witchcraft! Yes, we can be friends although we definitely believe in different thing’s I believe in God and the only way to be with God is through his son Jesus! I know nothing about Wicks and don’t want to know about it! It was stated one will be taken to Heaven and the other left behind! We are living in the ending time’s and many will be taken to Heaven and the other will be left behind! He left a flock behind and I Pray someone steps up in his place! God Bless him! He’s in Heaven much better than earth, I would say! God Speed Everyone!

  11. Linda Happenny says:

    This is about a pastor and human being who passed away in a horrible way. In africa, this is what they do. It is their way of doing baptism in their culture. We can have all the opinions about it, Bottom line they are not us. Let us just send our energy to him and his family.

  12. Linda Happenny says:

    can’t post?

Leave a Comment