Snake ministry visited BG Alliance PDF Print E-mail
Written by BILL RYAN Sentinel Religion Editor   
Friday, 30 August 2013 08:40
Molly Barber handles a snake Sunday evening during the "Snakes Alive Ministry" event at Bowling Green Alliance Church. (Photos: Shane Hughes/Sentinel-Tribune)
Snakes are mentioned several times in the Bible. Starting with the temptation of Adam and Eve in Genesis, the reptiles are not held in high esteem.
"Reptile Rick" Teepen brought a different perspective of snakes and other reptiles to Bowling Green Alliance Church on Sunday with his "Snakes Alive" ministry.
"I want you to see these creations of God and give glory to it," Teepen told those gathered, including roughly two dozen children who sat on the floor up front.
Throughout the one-hour show, Teepen allowed the audience to handle some of the snakes and other reptiles he brought with him.
He closed his show with Daisy, an albino Burmese python, who at 15-feet in length is only half grown. Teepen said Daisy eats one 8-pound rabbit a month, and will eventually grow to at least 25 foot. It took six adults or nine children to hold the snake.
He calls his show "family friendly" and is designed to be educational, entertaining and inspirational.
Throughout his presentation Teepen referenced places and stories in the Bible as well as details and information about the various snakes and other reptiles he brought.
Those on hand Sunday seemed to enjoy themselves.
Jack Hise, 10, of Bowling Green, said the show was good.
Rick Teepen displays a snake Sunday evening during the "Snakes Alive Ministry" event.
"He should let all the snakes free, it would be cool," the young man said.
Susan Shammo, a church member from Gibsonburg, called the presentation "very informative."
She added, "It was better than I expected. I especially enjoyed the children's reactions."
Teepen showed how a Somoan snake's coloring allows it to be camouflaged in the sand.
In showing a small three-year-old alligator named Samson, Teepen had children feel him and asked, "What's he feel like? Luggage?"
He compared the feel of some of his snakes to a garden hose or a basketball. He said all the different types of animals and their ability to function shows "how God fine tunes his creation down to the finest detail."
He compared how a gecko can lose its tail and it will grow back, with salvation.
"If we give our heart to Jesus, he gives us a new life forever," Teepen said in one of his evangelization moments.
One young audience member surprised Teepen with his answer to the question of why a corn snake is so named.
Zane Barber handles a snake Sunday evening during the "Snakes Alive Ministry" event.
"Because it tastes like corn," the young voice cried out.
"That's the first time I've heard that," Teepen said, declining the option of tasting the reptile.
He explained that the pattern on the snake's belly resembles Indian corn.
One young man knew the slogan of how to tell the difference between a deadly North American coral snake and its safe imitator, the milk snake. If red touches black, you're okay Jack; if red touches yellow, you're a dead fellow," the young man said to the praise of Teepen.
Teepen then showed a variety of milk snakes in different colors, including a reddish pink one he called his "strawberry milk snake."
He also showed two smaller ones he said were named "Pepto" and "Bismo"
Referencing 1Peter 4:10, Teepen challenged everyone saying: "God gives everyone a gift. I don't know what your talent is, but use it. You will be amazed at what doors God will open."

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