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The Facebook video begins with two Mormon missionaries on the tough streets of Manaus, Brazil, perhaps just trying to bear a little testimony about the LDS gospel with some passers-by.

Then, two men ride up on a motorcycle. One leaps off, approaches the white shirt and tie-wearing pair, appears to pull a gun from his belt and threatens the missionaries as he tries to rifle their pockets.


The taller and heftier of the Mormon emissaries grabs the gun out of the surprised street thug's hand. When the second suspect darts into the fray trying to reclaim the weapon, the missionary throws it over a fence.

While his companion watches, the larger missionary proceeds to offer not the right hand of fellowship but a flurry of overhand rights and straight left jabs that send the culprit reeling across the street and finally tumbling onto the asphalt.

The minutelong video, apparently captured on a security camera last Saturday, ends with the would-be robbers fleeing on foot — and the missionary, shirt and tie askew, standing victorious, his arms held out from his sides and seemingly ready for more.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints declined Wednesday to release the identities of the missionaries attacked, but confirmed the two were assigned to the Manaus mission and are safe. A church public affairs representative would not comment on whether additional safety precautions were being enacted as a result of the attack.

Manaus, a city of 1.8 million, is capital of northwestern Brazil's state of Amazonas. The city is known for its beaches, but its poorer sections have a reputation for violent street crime, illicit drug trade, and opportunistic thefts and robberies. In January, the Anisio Jobim prison on the city's outskirts was the site of clashes between rival drug gangs that left at least 60 inmates dead.

Bob Mims