Skinheads Assault Mormon Missionaries

I was reached by chocking news today. My nephew, who is serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, was together with his companion assaulted cruelly by a band of ten skinheads in Bolton, England last night. While the two missionaries were severely battered a vehicle passed by with flashing light, scaring off the offenders. “Without the arrival of the car we probably wouldn’t have survived,” my nephew told his father, seemingly aware of the gang’s fatal intention. Currently he and his companion are in the hospital being treated for multiple injuries.

Naturally, my brother and his family are in a state of emotional turmoil right now. And although not parents of the victims, me and my wife’s hearts are turned to Sebastian, whom we love so dearly, and to his companion. We honor them for their bravery and pray for their fast recovery.

Sadly, persecution has always been geared toward our Church. From the very beginning, verbal and physical abuse was the constant companion of each Church members. And even though mob violence against us has subdued over the years, it has now begun to escalate again, especially against missionaries.

The tragedy is that this violence is being fueled by more and more anti-mormons who stop at nothing to discredit the Church, always through untruthful rhetoric. I won’t bring up all their reasons here today, but suffice it to say that I feel ashamed of these fellow “Christians” who use more energy in slandering other faiths than in building up their own.

God bless you, Elder Sebastian Herrey. I know that not every day of our “Good Life” is a good day. But it is my prayer that the Lord will help you gather strength, not fear, from what happened. I know He will.

Uncle Louis

9 replies »

  1. Thanks for all your comments! And thanks for your prayers. I just got news that the elders are rapidly recovering, and soon they will get back to their service, if not already. They have no intention of going home. They never had. They’re great men, and they honor their families as well as their Heavenly Father.

    Eileen, thanks for your words. I am sure Elder Herrey appreciates it very much! (I think he has read this) He loved Isle of Man!

    Best regards, Louis

  2. Hi Louis!
    I was shocked to hear about the attack of your nephew and his companion. The are in my prayer.
    I must admit I get I little angry when I hear things like this. I meen the missionairies are just doing what they are called to do. And other people should just respect that we think differently. And not attack us.
    But I also know that this will get worse the closer we get to the returning of Christ.

  3. I’m so sorry to learn of this attack and am glad to read that both young elders are now recovering.

    I found myself wondering if they would leave the mission field for home, but I doubt if they do so. Situations like this remind me of the persecution of early church leaders and members who sometimes had to flee their homes for safety. I think of Joseph Smith who was persecuted over and over and over again in ways ranging from being tarred and feathered to being assasinated. At any time, he could have saved his own life by saying that he was mistaken, that he had not seen a vision, that the Book of Mormon was a sham. But did he? No. He knew he’d have to answer to God someday, and who was he to go against Him?

    We all need to be more like him and like these young missionaries…brave and valiant despite obstacles and persecution.

  4. My husband and I live in the Isle of Man where we were very happy to have spent a lot of time, in Missionary Work, with Elder Herrey. We were shocked to hear, today, of the ‘attack’ on him and his Companion. We are so very thankful that the two young men are recovering from their injuries.
    Elder Herrey is a great Missionary, and we love him very much.

  5. Pleased to make your acquaintance! I’m just sorry it had to be because of these sad happenings. My wife and I have also been worried about your son. I understand he is quite new in the mission field. We heard that they are recovering quickly, and ready to soon go to work again. Thank God!

    Our prayers are with you and your son. Any friends of Elder Herrey are friends of ours 🙂
    God bless!

  6. I am Elder Woolsey’s mom, the companion of Elder Herrey who was also beaten. I to have been sickened and heart broke over this news. The pictures of those two young missionaries taken after they were severly beaten makes me sick and very sad that anyone could do that. I’m am so glad they are ok and that they were protected by the Lord. Thanks for everyone prayers and support.

  7. It saddens me to see and hear about what people do to missionaries. I have an immeasurable gratitude towards missionaries and the wonderful work they do.

    People should realize that the young missionaries are the children of mothers and fathers. All in which have nothing but good intentions for man.

    I pray your nephew and his companion recover quickly and that this incident not discourage their efforts.

  8. Thanks for your concern!

    I don’t have statistics in my hand, but I made that claim based on news-statements plus oral report from several mission presidents that I have spoken to (I am a CES Coordinator in Europe). There seems to be an agreement that the threat lds missionaries face today is greater than before.

    Having said that, in a all fairness I think a part of that escalated threat can be contributed to the fact that many Christian groups and Churches – mormons included – are in some part of the world living under dangerous political and religious circumstances.

    In other words, we are not the only ones beeing “persecuted”. I have a dear friend whose family is now fleeing from Iraq because of the current, systematic extinctions of Christians there.

    Anyway, I have sent some questions around just to see if I can collect some sort of report for you. If I find something, I’ll let you know.


  9. I’m sorry to hear that about your nephew and his companion. I hope they recover quickly.

    I was not awary that mob violence is escalating against church members. Do you have any sources I can turn to to learn more about this?

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