Enigma, GA Snake Worshiper Dies, Jan 1995


Enigma, Ga. (AP) - A Baptist man was bitten and killed by a rattlesnake he brought to church because the Bible says believers "shall take up serpents."
DEWEY BRUCE HALE, 40, was bitten during Sunday services at New River Holiness Church and died at home late that night, the sheriff's office said. The death was ruled accidental.
"The Sheriff's Department was not called by family or the church," said Sheriff Jerry Brogdon. "Nothing was reported. If he had gone to the hospital, it would've all been different."
Witnesses said HALE brought the rattlesnake to church in a box and was bitten on the hand when he took it out.
Martha Hale, a cousin of the victim, said church members "feel that the Holy Spirit moves on them enough that they can take up serpents."
"Many have been bitten and were healed at that church," she said.
"They feel he didn't die because of the snake, but that he died because it was his time to go."

Tyrone Daily Herald Pennsylvania 1995-01-19