Copyright ©2002 Ren Baer

Falsely Accused - Chapter Two 

In New Orleans, every day on the streets there is some type of entertainment going on. People will be preforming, reading tarot cards, pawn readers, and in the midst of all the violence there was a preacher man. He has on the same torn dirty clothes. His hair and beard is long, Most people call him Crazy John or John the Baptist man, because he use to be a Baptist Preacher somewhere up north. Others were afraid of John because he spoke against their sins. Some just thought he was another entertainer like all the others and would drop money on the ground before him and walk away. John would never pick up the money. He would leave it for the wicked to fight over in the streets. John lived near the swamps. And ate whatever he caught with his homemade traps. 

A young man named Mat would follow him to see what he was going to do next. He always watched him because he was curious. John knew he was there watching him. One day he said to the kid, "Why don't you join me and we will go fishing." The boy said, Alright". As they sat on the banks fishing, the boy said, Can I ask you something, John? "Sure, son," said the man. Why are you out there everyday standing on the streets talking to people who are not listening?" The man smiled, Well, son, how do we really know who is listening and who is not?" That's true, said the boy. "Did you use to be a preacher?" Well, I guess that is what you could call it, signed John. "I was a sinner and deceived in many ways, when I tried to make it right, I lost everything I had." "Oh, that's terrible, John!" said the boy. "So, why you still believing in God after all of this happened to you?" "Well, it is because I believed in God and His Word that all this happened to me, replied John. "What? I don't understand," replied the boy. John smiled and said, "One day you will, boy, One day you will." 

Early the next morning before the chickens crowed. John was out on the streets. He was preaching on abomination of the world and yelling "Repent for the kingdom of God is at hand!" And there would be Mat right there listening to him. He would always follow John around and then go home and tell his mother all what John preached on. Mat's mother was a widow and worked two job to support Mat and his sister Mary. at dinner that evening Mat ask his mother, " Mom, can we ask John over for dinner sometime?" "Well, No"! said his mother. "Why not, Mom," said Mat. "Well, because we do not know him that is why." " I do" said, Mat. "You stay away from that crazy wild man, Mat, or I will whip you good," yelled his mother. Mat did not say another word about it at dinner. Mat arose the next morning and got ready for school. He sneaked half of his breakfast into his backpack and ran out the door, after kisses his mother good-bye. 

Then he immediately went to look for John and gave the breakfast to him. John asked" Where did you get this food?" "I got it from my house, it is part of my breakfast my mom fixed this morning." Well, I don't want you stealing food for me, Mat, the Lord will provide all my needs." I didn't it was part of my breakfast, said Mat. "Okay," said John. How old are you, Mat?" asked John. "I am twelve" replied Mat. "Well, your growing up and one day you will be a man." Let me ask you something?" Sure, John, said Mat. "Do you know Jesus as your Lord and Saviour?"asked John. "No, but I am wanting to know him and my family to know him," answered Mat. "Well son, you have to repent of your sins and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ and you will receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. "I want to do this now, John," replied Mat. "Great!" said John. Mat prayed and repented of all his sins, afterwards he asked John, "What now do I need to do?" John replied, "Well, now you need to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ" "Can we do that now, John?" "Sure" replied John. John immediately took Mat to the waters to baptize him. And they hung his clothes to dry on a nearby tree and visited while his clothes dried. John got dressed and went on his way to school. 

He was late getting there and had to stay after school. He thought this was a small price to pay. Mat's mother was very concerned when Mat did not come home after school. It was starting to get dark out and still he was not home yet. She called the police and they came right over. She told them that she was worried and what Mat was wearing that day. The police began looking for Mat. They knocked on many doors of his friends' house but no one had seen Mat. His best friend Chris told them that he hung out with Crazy John a lot lately. 

The police went to the swamps to talk to John. "John, have you seen, Mat?" " Not since this morning he stopped by here to see me, then he went to school." said John. Well he never returned home from school and his mom is worried, replied the officer. "Well, that is odd," said John. "Well if you hear from him tell him to get home," said the officers. "I will, replied," John. 

Two weeks later the police found Mat's body in the bottom of the swamp. The police had his mother identify the body. She screamed and cried when she recognized it was her little boy. "Who would do such a thing to a little child," she asked. "We don't know, mama, but we will find out." The police investigated the case with no clues to what had happened. 

Mat's mother remembered about Crazy John that Mat talked about. She went to the Police Station and told them what she knew. They began to ask Mat's friends about John and what they knew. They only knew about John's preaching in the streets. 

Then one day an elderly man came and and reported that he saw Mat that morning with Crazy John near the swamp. And that Mat's clothes were hanging on a near by tree. He thought it was odd but did not want to jump to any conclusions. The police immediately picked up John off the streets for questioning. John answered all their questions. They also did a background check on John. They found out his real name was Terry Davis and that he use to be a Baptist Preacher. 

They contacted the Baptist Church to get more information on John. They were connected to Pastor's office. "Hello, this is Pastor Ferr, Can I help you?" The Officer replied, This is New Orleans Police Department and we have a Terry Davis here. Do you know him and what can you tell me about him?" "Terry was our Pastor for many years until he ran out on his wife, kids, and the church around five years ago. And no one has heard from him since. What has he done?" Well, we can't say for sure if he has done anything or not. We have him here questioning him about a murder of a 12 year old boy." "What!, said Pastor Ferr." Well we know him as John around here in New Orleans and he preaches on the streets and lives near the swamps. This boy use to hang out with him and visit him and had the morning he come up missing. The boy's body was found in the swamp just less then a mile where John, I mean, Terry's camp is located, said the Officer. "Well, I never would thought he would be capable of doing that, but of course I never thought he would run out on his wife and kids either," said Pastor Ferr. Well, thank you for your time, Pastor Ferr, we will get in touch with you if we have anymore questions." "You're Welcomed, Good-bye, replied Pastor Ferr. 

Marie was washing clothes and she heard a knock on her door. She went to the door and it was Pastor Ferr. She opened the door and let him in. He asked her to sit down. "Marie, we have heard from Terry," said Ferr. Marie eyes filled up with tears. "Is he alright? Is he dead?" asked Marie. "No, Marie, he is not dead, answered Ferr. "He is in jail for murder in New Orleans." "Terry, is not capable of doing that!" she said. "Who was it that he supposedly killed?" "They are accusing him of killing and twelve year old boy and placing his body in a swamp." "What? I don't believe it, Terry was always a very loving dad," she said. "Well, I want to see, Terry." Now Marie, the church can not allow you to do this and put yourself and your children in danger." "We are not in danger," Pastor Ferr. I am still his wife and these are his kids, And besides that he does not even know about Teresa. "I don't think you ought to tell him or contact him, Marie, said Pastor Ferr. "Well, Pastor Ferr, I appreciate your concerns but I have to do what is best for all of us." "Marie, your talking foolishly like Terry was, don't get involved in this, it will only because you more pain," said the pastor. "Pastor, you are the reason this happened all to begin with because you, the church would not hear what the Lord had shown him in His Word, I would not either," she said. Pastor Ferr got upset and left her house. Then little Teresa came into the living room and hugged her Mom. 

The media began to publish about the death of Mat. There were rumors all around about Crazy John's involvement with Mat. Many were falsely accusing him of murder. The police held Terry in jail with no bail until the trial. They did not want him to take off out of state. Terry was placed in a small cold cell. He had his bible and would minister to all the other prisoners that came into his cell. Terry thought of Matt alot and thanked the Lord that he had gotten saved before he died. His thoughts of Mat brought to him memories of Marie and the children that he had not seen in many years. He wondered if they were still alive and doing alright. He wondered if they ever thought of him or if they hated him for leaving them. He wondered why he was falsely accused of Mat's murder but the Lord brought to his remembrance that he should be persecuted for his name's sake.