The only man in the world known to have driven off a deadly terrorist attack on a church with a handgun will be visiting the U.S. for a speaking and media tour later this month.
South African Charl Van Wyk, author of “Shooting Back,” published by WND Books, will speak in several churches in the New York and Washington area May 13-20 and then be available for media interviews May 23-28.
In “Shooting Back: The Right and Duty of Self-Defense,” Van Wyk makes a biblical, Christian case for individuals arming themselves with guns and does so more persuasively than perhaps any other author because he found himself in a church attacked by terrorists.
“Grenades were exploding in flashes of light. Pews shattered under the blasts, sending splinters flying through the air,” he recalls of the July 25, 1993, St. James Church Massacre. “An automatic assault rifle was being fired and was fast ripping the pews – and whoever, whatever was in its trajectory – to pieces. We were being attacked!”
But Van Wyk was not defenseless that day. Had he been unarmed like the other congregants, the slaughter undoubtedly would have been much worse.
“Instinctively, I knelt down behind the bench in front of me and pulled out my .38 special snub-nosed revolver, which I always carried with me,” he writes in “Shooting Back.” “I would have felt undressed without it. Many people could not understand why I would carry a firearm into a church service, but I argued that this was a particularly dangerous time in South Africa.”
During that Sunday evening service, the terrorists, wielding AK-47s and grenades, killed 11 and wounded 58. But the fact that one man – Van Wyk – fired back, wounding one of the attackers, drove the others away.
Using his personal and high-profile story as a launch-pad, Van Wyk wrote “Shooting Back” – which instantly became a South African bestseller, as well as a bestseller for WND, which imported thousands of copies of the original book for sale online to audiences in the U.S. and around the world.
But it was always a challenge maintaining supplies to meet the demand, explains WND founder Joseph Farah. So now, WND Books has published, for the first time in the U.S., an updated, revised and repackaged edition of “Shooting Back” by Charl Van Wyk.
“I am honored to be a part of this historic undertaking – the republishing of this classic work in the United States,” said Farah, founder of WND Books and editor and chief executive officer of WND. “We have been working on this for more than three years. Now everyone can read this amazing and important story, which has applications in terror-stricken America and for Christians and Jews throughout the world.”
Far from being just a reliving of the tragedy of the St. James Church Massacre, “Shooting Back” is a thorough examination of the whole issue of armed self-defense from a Christian perspective. It deals with burning questions that plague all conscience-driven people:
- Should people, especially Christians, carry arms?
- When is it appropriate to defend ourselves and our families?
- What can Americans do when our freedom to carry arms is legislated away from us?
Using the Bible as his guidepost, Van Wyk makes the case that Christians not only have the right but the duty to defend themselves and other innocents from such aggression.
But this amazing true story doesn’t end there. It’s also about redemption and reconciliation. Several of the church members who were injured or who lost family members in the attacks, as well as Van Wyk, later met with and forgave some of their repentant attackers.
WND is sponsoring Van Wyk’s media tour. Editors, hosts and producers who would like to book the author for interviews should make requests now.