Heavy Metal Church Rocks Out for Jesus

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BOGOTÁ, Colombia -- Just on the outskirts of Bogotá, Colombia, an unlikely ministry is spreading the gospel.

Every Saturday a small group of heavy metal fans gathers the suburb of Colombia's capital.

Although it looks like a concert or party as they jump and toss their long-hair, these rockers are actually gathering for church.

Pastor Cristian Gonzalez, 31, founded this heavy metal church and calls it, Pantokrator, a Greek term meaning "all powerful."

There he preaches a message of love and acceptance.

"I think that if Jesus was present right now, in the flesh, he would accept everyone without differentiating or under-appreciating anyone," Gonzalez told CBN News.

"Whether it is tattoos or piercings, the book of Corinthians says there are people who may judge you based on your appearance, but they cannot judge your heart," he said.

The church is evangelical and claims 50 members who gather weekly to sing along with heavy metal hymns and join in head-banging prayers.

It's the place where 21-year-old Ana Maria Cabrera said she connects to God.

"I have found God inside this church," she told CBN News. "That loyal friend who is always with you, who does not let go of your hand - that God who stays close to you and makes you feel like you have someone with you 24 hours a day."

"That is what is really important, no matter what you look like or what music you listen to," she said.

Regardless of their appearance, most of these young people claim they are free from drugs and alcohol.

"If you look at the people gathered in this church, you will see that every one of them has a smile on their face," Cabrera said.

--Published Feb. 20, 2012.

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Stan Jeter

Stan Jeter

CBN News Senior Producer

CBN News Senior Producer Stan Jeter specializes in Christian news and Latin American coverage.  He has lived and worked for many years in South and Central America, most recently developing the Spanish Christian news program, Mundo Cristiano.  Follow Stan on Twitter @StanJeterNews and "like" him at Facebook.com/StanJeterCBN.