Religion In The News

Firecrackers For God

by Elroy Willis -- July 3, 1999

HOUSTON (EAP) -- Truth is stranger than fiction it seems, and a new Christian cult whose members consume lit firecrackers to test their faith in God is just another example of how true the saying is.

Members of the group light firecrackers and put them in their mouths to see if God will prevent the firecrackers from exploding.

"God will protect us and put out the fuses," says 35-year-old William Burris, leader of the daredevil group of Christians.

"We think the snake handlers aren't giving enough credit to God but we don't want to go so far as to ingest poison to test our faith. We'd rather put firecrackers in our mouths," he said.

According to Burris, there haven't been any incidents of explosions in anyone's mouth yet, but he says that there's always the chance that their faith will come to be tested if a firecracker actually explodes in one of their mouths, and God will instantly heal the person.

"We don't like to make fun of the snake-handlers and poison-drinkers, but we think our method of testing our faith in God is much better," Burris said earlier this week, in anticipation of the Fourth of July holiday during which time recruitment efforts are at their highest.

"Some people laugh at us, but we think what we're doing shows how much we believe in God," he said.


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