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Florida Street Preacher Issues 'Saving Souls Challenge'

Florida Street Preacher Issues 'Saving Souls Challenge' Read Transcript

A Facebook video using the title "Saving Souls Challenge"

is making its rounds on the internet.

The video shows street ministers sharing the gospel

and praying for people in an inner city

neighborhood in Florida.

The video also shows former gang members and drug dealers

being baptized right out in the open.

Anthony Durden is the man behind the movement,

and he joins me now via Skype.

Anthony, welcome.

Thank you so much for your time today.

Thank you so much for having me.

First of all, your video of ministering to people

and even baptizing a few of them has gone viral.

Even some well-known people such as Priscilla Shire and Erica

Campbell have shared the video.

Tell me about the video.

Well, the video was captured by one of my big brothers I

call my mentor, D.J. Obadiah from WGGF Radio here in South


He was capturing some footage from his cell phone.

And the morning after he'd been in Opa-locka,

he inboxed me in my WhatsApp and I

saw the video for the first time, which

was a 53-second snippet.

So what was happening in it, what's

going on there with the video?

Who was in this video?

My brothers, we have an annual event

called "Peace in the Hood," and it's

a movement that's been started for a few years now.

And it's just brothers coming from

different geographical areas throughout the United States.

A lot of the brothers are not even from Florida.

Some of them came as far as from New Orleans.

Some people traveled from other states

to be a part of this movement on this specific date.

And the people who were being baptized, wow,

who were these people?

These are young men who grew up in Opa-locka.

A lot of them have the same stories from the backgrounds

that I come from myself.

They're from the streets.

A lot of them are active in gangs, a lot of them

are active in drugs, and a lot of them

are just dealing with a lot of different spiritual battles.

And so we've been ministering to them for some time

now, even before the baptism took place.

Any time you see one of your brothers out there,

you're always constantly trying to witness to them,

and allow your life to be a testimony, so to speak,

to them.

Let me ask you this, too, Anthony.

You do a lot of street ministry there in Florida.

Talk about sharing the Gospel with people

in these really rough parts of town,

some of these neighborhoods.

You know?


Well, because myself, I've been on streets, I've been homeless.

You know, I was once a drug addict addicted

to crack cocaine, marijuana, cigarettes, and alcohol.

Anything else you could think of,

that was the lifestyle for me for many, many years,

over 20 years of addiction that I struggled with.

And so God has the will of doing things where he can take those

from the darkness, life myself, and allow them to go back

into the dark to be that light for those

that can see the light.

And that's what it's about with us.

It's just going back in those trenches,

in those byways and highways, where God brought us from.

From those pits that God delivered us from,

to go back and save more.

And so what's been the response

since you've been doing this type of ministry?

What are you seeing by way of people getting saved,

giving, their lives to Christ?

What are you seeing?

It's a phenomenal experience to actually have

an impact on people's change.

We know that God is the ultimate,

he gets the ultimate glory.

But it is some self-gratification

when you have been working with people in the streets

and you've been praying for them.

And then you start seeing the fruits

when you see these men and women come from off the streets

and they're going into programs where they can get

more counsel and more teaching.

It's a miraculous thing to see.

It's a miracle.

These are our modern day miracles, you know?

Praise God.

Does any one testimony stand out, you know,

over all the others?

I know you probably have a million of them,

but any one that really, really is like,

wow, this guy's really--

God's really doing a work in his life?

Well, there's several people who

I've taken off the streets, put in my car,

taken them to drug programs.

There are people who I've seen get out of prison,

from doing multiple years in prison.

I have a cousin that just served 22 years in prison.

Barack Obama signed the papers, actually,

to get him out of prison.

And he's been home for eight months

and he's written two books while he was in prison.

And since he's been home, his work ethic for the Kingdom

has been phenomenal.

I haven't seen this before from someone

who has been that much time incarcerated.

And to see where God has brought him from.

And so now, he's a standout testimony to me.

Praise God.

Although he's family, it's his story,

his testimony is somewhat like mine.

Praise God.

My story is the epic testimony to myself.

I have to preach to myself every day

of how good God has been to me.

So tell me this.

How would you encourage other people

to take this "Saving Souls Challenge?"

Because there's so many lost people in our neighborhoods,

in our communities.

How would you encourage other people

to get out in the streets, because the harvest is ripe?

Well, what made it become a challenge,

I put in the heading that this was a challenge,

but I challenged everybody that's doing Kingdom work,

that's Kingdom-minded, that has a Kingdom agenda,

I challenge them.

I challenge us.

I challenge the world to get better

in those areas of their spirituality,

because there's a lot of different things on Facebook.

There's a lot of different challenges as of recently.

There's been challenges all over social media

for the wrong reasons.

There's much going on with hurricanes and tragedies

in our society right now.

The last thing we need to be doing is feeding--

I would say feeding the beast with foolishness and ignorance

on social media.

So I wanted to kind of like combat

that spiritual war on social media, to challenge us

as Kingdom-minded people to go out

and witness to those who may be lost in those areas,

not judging anyone.

God is the ultimate judge.

But to just challenge as as Kingdom-minded people

to go out and step outside the four walls,

to go out and do the Kingdom work that God

has called us to do.


Well you're doing a phenomenal job there in Florida.

And our prayers are with you, that you

will continue to do what God's called you to do and encourage

other people to do what God's leading them to do as well.

The harvest is truly ripe.

Thank you so much, Anthony Durden, for your time today.

Thank you so much for having me.

God bless you.

God bless you too.

Bye bye.

Bye bye.

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