Today was very eventful day as I was privileged to have Bro. Titus Shucraft and James Persinger accompany me. Bro. Titus preached a wonderful message on giving the Lord prais for all that He has done for us. As we were fellowshipping, after the service in front of the church, a gun battle broke out. At first it just sounded like loud firecrackers, but after the fifth or sixth blast it was evident what was taking place. I looked at my companions and told them that we needed to get back in the church; and now.
As we got to the front doors of the church we found that they were already barricaded from the inside, but the immediately opened them to allow us to enter. As we watched the events from the church windows it was sad to see the chaos as it unfolded. People were scurrying from place to place trying to find a place of refuge to get away from the melee that had erupted within 100 feet from us. In short order the process had been put in place for evacuating all visitors from the prison. It was somewhat of a controlled chaos as people by the hundreds were making their way to the front entrance. What made matters worse was when gun-fire erupted in the area where we were heading to make our exit. Children and women all around us were crying as the mass of people were heading to the exit.
It was chaos at the exit; one door, as hundreds were trying to make their way to the door. Titus, James and I were assisting women and children to the exit as we ourselves were making our way there. It was something like out of a bad novel, but the event was happening so fast that it didn’t really leave time for one to contemplate on what was taking place. Instinct, preparations and the presence of the Lord kicked in.
The three of us, after reaching the common area before being able to leave, just stood there and tried to take it all in. Federal police and military rushed past us by the dozens to engage the conflict that was awaiting them just behind the inner walls. Gunshots were firing at a fast pace, and the greater the gunfire the greater emotional distress on those around us, realizing that their loved ones are on the other side of those walls. After a short time 9 men were ushered out and lined up against the wall. About 10 minutes later 15 more men were brought out, bloodied and being carried. One body was just thrown through the door. Whether dead or not we don’t know, but there was no movement. It took almost an hour for the visitors to be able to be evacuated. It won’t be till later before we know the total details of what just transpired, but the Jesús Ramos (the warden) did stop to talk to us as he saw us leaving, to ask for prayer. Please remember this prison right now in your prayers. The Director of Education (Milagros) asked me for prayer, not only for them, but that there not be many dead.