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USA News

‘He feared no evil’: US pastor shot outside church while trying to stop car theft

by Lydia Davies

A US pastor was taken to hospital after being shot in the mouth outside his church on Sunday.

The incident took place outside New Zionfield Baptist Church in Memphis Tennessee, with witnesses saying their pastor was trying to stop thieves stealing a car belonging to the Sunday school teacher.

A statement from the Memphis Police Department read: “The victim was shot when he came out of the church as the suspects were stealing a 2019 silver Chevrolet Corvette. As the suspects fled the scene in the stolen vehicle, they fired shots, striking the victim.”

Police said the 70-year-old pastor is in a stable condition and the stolen car hasn’t been recovered yet.

The church has asked for prayers for their pastor. It said in a Facebook post on Sunday night: “Keep Pastor Clemmie Livingston Jr In Prayer He Was Shot At Our Church This Morning... Right Now He Is In Surgery May God Touch The Doctors Hand.... My Dad Has Always Been A Fighter And I'm Praying He Keep On Keeping On”.

Police said the shooting happened at 9am, just moments before the church’s Sunday morning service was supposed to begin. He had planned to deliver a sermon titled “Another Chance,” reflecting his commitment to offering redemption to all.

The pastor’s grandson Kavion Woodin, expressed shock and dismay, emphasising the need for Memphis to confront its issues with violence.

"My grandad got shot in the mouth," he told Fox 13, a US TV channel. "This should be one of the things that wakes up Memphis to show that nobody’s safe. A church is one of the safest places you should be at.

"Somebody tried to take one of the church member’s cars, and my granddaddy stepped up.

“He feared no evil. He came out the church to protect a car because he feared no evil.

"Honestly, I’m sick and tired of losing people to gun violence and cars. I’ve lost seven friends due to gun violence. I’ve lost two friends to cars, and I’m nothing but 17.

"It’s time to stop the violence. It’s time to stop the robbing, stop the killing. It’s time to put the guns down."



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