We share the following report to glorify our Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ. I interviewed Pastor Francis personally. You can see a video portion regarding his testimony on the Finger of God Series Part 7 which is hosted on our
The following testimony of Pastor Francis Shongwe is a truly remarkable account of God's grace in response to prayer and forgiveness.
Pastor Shongwe lives in the area of Kabokwene, South Africa and just a few years ago(2003) was declared dead at the hospital after being severely beaten and stabbed by four drunken men. He with other leaders were conducting revival services in the community. One evening as the service was ending Pastor Francis went to the front gate to lock it for the evening. He was approached by four men who became violent and turned on him. They stabbed him three times and beat him fatally. He was taken to the hospital and the police were called for assistance.
When he arrived at the local hospital he was pronounced dead and taken to the mortuary within the hospital. The people at the meeting prayed through the night until the early hours of the morning. Meanwhile the police had apprehended one young man and having heard of the death of Francis from the hospital staff detained him pending an investigation of murder charges. The police asked the leadership of the church to press charges of murder against the young man.
However, during the hours spent in prayer throughout the night and also having heard of the death of Francis they felt that the Lord was asking them to forgive the young men and to not press charges against them. This upset the attending police officers who said that they themselves would press charges then.
It was then, early in the morning that the hospital phoned Pastor Supressa, another of the leaders on the scene. The hospital staff was in a turmoil because the man they had pronounced dead and placed in the mortuary had now come back to life. When Pastor Supressa went there, he found Pastor Francis alive but unconscious but he soon awakened. He also was still showing signs of bruising, swelling and stab wounds because of the violent attack that he had received. He also didn't have any clothes left because the hospital staff had thrown them out because they were bloody and torn up. Pastor Supressa left the hospital to purchase a new set of clothes for Francis. When he arrived back later all evidence of bruising, swelling and the stab wounds had completely left the body of Francis.
While Francis was dead he visited heaven, saw many angels and spoke with Abraham about the future. He remembers falling to the ground while being attacked and then suddenly he was in Heaven. Towards the end of his visit there, he heard people calling his name and then he woke up in his body in the hospital where Pastor Surpressa was praying at the time for him.
Pastor Francis Shongwe continues to pastor an Iris Africa church in South Africa and takes active leadership in what God is doing in Mpumalanga
Province. Pastor Supressa serves in a key leadership position with Iris Africa under the leadership of founding directors Heidi and Rolland Baker.
God is able to do wonderful works when His people hear and follow after the heart of God in every circumstance no matter what it may be.
Photo: see below Iris Staff Retreat in Belaine, Mozambique 2006.
PASTOR SHONGWE AT IRIS STAFF RETREAT.