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Machine Gun Preacher heading to Rocky to give Hope

SAVING LIVES: Sam Childers, aka the Machine Gun Preacher, at Angels of East Africa's orphanage in Nimule, South Sudan.
SAVING LIVES: Sam Childers, aka the Machine Gun Preacher, at Angels of East Africa's orphanage in Nimule, South Sudan. Contributed

ADDICTED to heroin, dealing drugs and getting into fights was how Sam Childers led the first part of his life.

Now the man dubbed the Machine Gun Preacher splits his time between living in war-torn Sudan building schools and orphanages and the rest of his time touring the world, sharing his life story with the aim to give those that listen "Hope”.

His life story was first put into words in an autobiography called Another Man's War, published in 2009, which led to a Hollywood film called Machine Gun Preacher starring Gerard Butler released in 2011.

Sam Childers, pictured with actor Gerard Butler, who played the assault rifle-wielding crusader in the 2011 movie.
Sam Childers, pictured with actor Gerard Butler, who played the assault rifle-wielding crusader in the 2011 movie. Contributed

With a 'Bible in one hand' and AK47 in the other', Childers has helped saved the lives of thousands of women and children.

He said there are now seven orphanages in three countries, seven schools and an eight currently being built by workers of Angels Of East Africa - the humanitarian organisation Childers set up with his now former wife Lynn in 1998.

Childers is headed to Rockhampton next month to share his story face-to-face with locals.

He spoke with The Morning Bulletin ahead of his visit on September 13.

The Machine Gun Preacher Sam Childers.
Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin
The Machine Gun Preacher Sam Childers. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin Allan Reinikka ROK060913apreache

The former bad boy biker said the turning point in his life was the night he got into a bar fight that almost killed him.

He said he was addicted to heroin at the time and would get into fights a lot.

"That night I made up my mind that I was going to walk away from that (life),” Childers said.

He said the one message he pushes in his public talks about his past life as a drug addict and Outlaw Motorcycle Club member is that an addict has to really want to not be an addict any more for rehabilitation to work.

"You have to want it enough that you are going to change your life,” Childers said.

"Rehab can't take your addiction away.”

Sam Childers at an orphanage in Sudan 2009 with Samuel, one of his children.
Sam Childers at an orphanage in Sudan 2009 with Samuel, one of his children. Contributed

MEET THE MACHINE GUN PREACHER

Where: Oasis New Life Centre, cnr of Glenmore Rd and Fraser St, Park Avenue

When: September 13, 7pm-9pm

Tickets: $15 Click here to book: Sam Childers Rockhampton

Topics:  machine gun preacher oasis new life centre orphans sam childers sudan whatson



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