The co-founder of a Satanic movement in South Africa is telling his personal story about choosing to leave Satanism after his heart was overwhelmed with the love of Jesus.
Riaan Swiegelaar, a former reverend at the South African Satanic Church (SASC), stepped down from his position in May. He took to Facebook on July 4 to share his testimony.
“I’m doing this live video because many, more than 100 people, on WhatsApp and almost 200 on Facebook, are sending me messages wanting to know why did I leave the South African Satanic Church as well as why did I turn my back on Satanism,” Swiegelaar said.
“To be very honest, I initially thought I will slip out the back door quietly and I didn’t really think that people would be this interested in why I am doing what I’m doing. I’m going to talk from my experience. I’m going to talk about my choices.”
Swiegelaar noted that he wanted to address people from a “personal space but with an open heart.”
“I actually feel it’s time more people just start talking, speaking their truth, so I’m certainly encouraging people to do that as well by doing this video,” he stated.
Swiegelaar, who was involved in Christian ministry 20 years ago before becoming an atheist, recalled what drew him to Satanism four years ago.
“I got involved with Satanism because at the time it resonated with me, being very broken and sad without realizing it. I think the reason a lot of people resonate with Satanism is they come from a very broken place. I have met thousands of Satanists over the last three years and I’m not saying the intentions are bad, they are extremely broken and extremely hurt … that’s the one thing we all have in common,” he said.