This Church Channels Heavy Metal To Preach The Holy Word
Many have the misconceived notion heavy metal’s from the minds of Satan worshippers—not entirely true. Some head bangers in Sᾶo Paulo, Brazil, have come together to create Crash Church—an Evangelical outfit that found a way worship God through the thrashing on guitar chords.
Rather than an actual church, Crash was created in a big garage so Christian metal heads could practice religion in their own way. Even the parishioners dress in unconventional clothes—black t-shirt, jeans and gym shoes. Piercings and tattoos are not taboo here, as Pastor Antônio Carlos Batista’s covered in ink and wears infinitely many earrings. However, his tattoos are in honor of the Christian faith.
But rather than expecting his congregation to keep their eyes on him, Batista allows folks to follow along on their mobile phones if need be—Bibles too, of course. Additionally, there’s a TV screen availing the passages Batista bellows to his people. Even more amazing is he uses laymen’s terms to convey the religious texts, so folks can better absorb the meaning(s). Between each sermon, Batista busts out in metal music, celebrating the Holy Spirit.
“This is part of God’s plan to cross barriers, which had a very closed-off format and were unable to reach many aspects of society,” Pastor Batista said in an interview. He’s also the front man for Christian death-metal band Antidemon.
Back in 1998, when Batista realized the “divine need” for such a spiritual site, he wasn’t a full-on metal fan. Originally, Batista led a large number of those opposing the conventional ways of the Reborn in Christ Church. However, he claims to have experienced divine intervention to form Crash Church. “I received a message from God, asking for my help in converting the rockers,” he added.
Despite Pastor Batista doing all this good in the way he believes to have been told, Crash is catching flack from both head bangers and other Evangelicals. The Holies hold them in a devilish light, while metal folks feel they’re too civilized. Yes, the hate went so deep a dreadful thing almost killed Crash’s Pastor Batista back in 1996. Terrorista Punk-member Ana Batista took a dagger into the church and attempted to assassinate Pastor Batista. “I hated religion; I wanted to put a stop to his work,” she said to Templo Metal. However, upon her hearing the sermon, she felt the power...and soon turned parishioner. Four months after, Ana was baptized under Crash’s roof. “I am a servant of God today,” she added.
Crash can actually rely on their parishioners to pay the rent and bills via donations for the 200-square-meter mass house. Members also fund Antidemon’s tours—they’ve visited over 30 countries, preaching The Word and playing heavy metal. But they’re not the only heavy-metal Holy house—Pantokrator Church is killing guitars for Christ too! Hey, if punk rock can get religious, may metal find its way too.