‘Persecuted’ and ‘targeted’: evangelist Torben Søndergaard faces deportation from US

Danish evangelist Torben Søndergaard (PHOTO: CBN)

Originally published in CBN News

Danish evangelist Torben Søndergaard now faces possible deportation after the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals denied a “Petitioner’s Motion for Stay of Removal” that could have freed Søndergaard from an ICE prison or led to a new trial in the immigration courts.

Søndergaard has been held for a year in the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Baker County Facility in Macclenny, Florida. 

Border Security and Enforcement Subcommittee Chairman Rep Clay Higgins (R-LA), says Søndergaard “has been persecuted by this administration and targeted, we believe because he is an evangelical Christian minister”.

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Søndergaard was taken into custody on June 30 last year in Florida by agents from the Joint Terrorism Task Force, while awaiting a decision on a pending asylum application with the US government. 

He was told he was being arrested for gun smuggling, even though Søndergaard was never charged with that. He is accused of overstaying his visa.

Søndergaard and his family fled Denmark in 2019, fearing persecution and arrest following a harassment campaign by the government and media. 

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Søndergaard’s legal team told CBN News it’s unclear when or if their client will be deported, as his application for political asylum is still pending.

On his Facebook page, Søndergaard writes that “It is, ‘Goodbye America,’ unless God comes and does a miracle. Yes, I still have my pending asylum running in the 11th circuit, so even though I lost my Motion to Stay, I could still win my asylum case that is running there.”

He adds: “It could also happen that I will be deported now, and then after I am deported, and am back to Europe, I could actually win my case and be able to come back to America. But it needs a miracle. And if I lose, it looks like it is, ‘Goodbye with America,’ for me.”

Torben is the founder of The Last Reformation, a worldwide movement that seeks to return Christianity to the Book of Acts. He also began the Jesus Center in Denmark, which trained disciples from 30 nations to spread this message around the world.

Attacks against his ministry in Denmark began in 2016 when the Jesus Center was investigated by six different Danish government agencies for everything from food safety to unpaid taxes. Officials found nothing wrong. The government then investigated his family when they began homeschooling.

Danish TV infiltrated his ministry with undercover reporters for a documentary called God’s Best Children, which lumped Torben in with other leaders of so-called “radical Christian” ministries who had had serious moral or ethical failures or even criminal activity.

Torben told CBN News the documentary ruined his reputation in Denmark.

Søndergaard asks Christians to “please continue to pray. Pray for the miracle to happen, but also pray for the church. Pray for revival. Pray for the judge, that they will do what is right and not be influenced by the lies and the pressure they are under. Pray for God’s will to be done. And of course, pray for my family…”

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