By Agustin Garfias
Police say it happened at the Lighthouse Worship Center in Beaumont late Friday night.
Pastor James McAbee is no stranger to crime at the Lighthouse Worship Center. Just last year he held two men at gunpoint as they were trying to break into the church. This earned him the nickname, “the pistol packing pastor.”
The lighthouse Worship Center in Beaumont is all quiet now, but it was a different story Friday night. At the end of a special prayer, witnesses say around 9 p.m. a shirtless man rushed into the church and started yelling.
“He got over here, and was just crawling, and was going upstage just going aahhhh, making some crazy faces and then got up here on the pulpit and started hollering and started shaking and was beating the pulpit,” says Pastor McAbee.
“Me and a couple other guys kinda stepped up and just kinda stood around him up on the podium whenever he got on the stage just kinda to keep an eye on things, just to make sure everything was ok”, said Donny Lovelady, a church member.
“He started running around hugging different people, jumping up and down on the pulpit, ran through the audience, and went out a side door, and that’s when things really changed”, said Pastor McAbee.
They say the man then took off all his clothes and started running wildly around the church screaming he was on pcp.
It was right outside this church door where several men said they had to hold the man back while he was completely naked, even pinning him against this wall at one point, and they say he was screaming ‘I am the world’…and touching himself”.
The pastor then called 911. Beaumont police officers arrived and arrested the man identified as 23-year-old Waymon Smith of Beaumont.
Pastor James McAbee says he holds no ill will toward Smith, “but I would say to him give it all to god ’cause obviously what you’re doing is not working”.
He just hopes he never has to deal with something like this again.
There were about twenty or so people in the church when this all happened and a couple of them said they felt safe knowing their pastor was carrying a licensed concealed handgun.