Nearly Martyred Pastor Umar Mulinde Says Farewell to Israel

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Shawn Akers

Ron Cantor (left) and pastor Umar Mulinde

On Dec. 24, 2011, two Islamic radicals threw buckets of skin-burning acid on Ugandan pastor Umar Mulinde. Through a series of miracles, he survived.

One of those miracles was that Sheba Hospital here in Israel offered to treat him free of charge—a gift worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. Without this treatment, he would have surely died. However, getting here was nearly impossible, as there is no Israeli Embassy in Uganda and he was in very bad shape. Getting a visa took a few more minor miracles.

When I saw a note on Facebook just after he arrived, I called up the hospital. Sheba is only 20 minutes from my home, and I wanted to meet this heroic pastor.

I assumed he was alone here and would welcome friendship from a believer. I quickly found him, and he invited me to come to the hospital, where he and his wife, Evelyn, shared with me his amazing story.

Working with Maoz Media, we documented that story in this video that has received more than 14,000 views.

Doctors have done an amazing job reconstructing his face, saving his ear and providing him with a prosthetic eye. He is ready to go back to Africa after more than two years of painful rehabilitation and to begin to preach the gospel once again.

This week, I had the honor of emceeing a farewell celebration. Several pastors and leaders from all over Israel who have grown to love Umar came to greet him and bless him upon his soon departure. He shared in detail how Israeli technology not only saved his life, but also sped up his recovery.

He plans to continue preaching the gospel in Africa and standing for Israel, as well as warning the West about the dangers of radical Islam. At a time when many evangelicals are turning against Israel, he is a pastor who nearly died for his support of Israel. One of the primary reasons he was targeted is because he led a campaign in Uganda to stop the Muslim community from enforcing Shariah law on its constituents. He presented a petition with tens of thousands of signatures to the Ugandan speaker of Parliament.

As a former Muslim, he warned them of the dangers of allowing this law to go through. It was defeated, and Umar Mulinde, the ex-Muslim preacher for Jesus, was attacked.

Let me encourage all of you to be in prayer for Umar as he returns to his wife and his children.

Ron Cantor is the director of Messiah’s Mandate International in Israel, a Messianic ministry dedicated to taking the message of Jesus from Israel to the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8). Cantor also travels internationally teaching on the Jewish roots of the New Testament. He serves on the pastoral team of Tiferet Yeshua, a Hebrew-speaking congregation in Tel Aviv. His newest book is Identity Theft. Follow him at @RonSCantor on Twitter.

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