Christian Living

Spiritual Life

End of the Spear: The True Story

Exclusive Interview

playPart Five

In this final section, Mincaye prays for people to know how to walk 'God's trail'. "Your son dripped His blood to mark the trail for us to walk on," he prays. Steve tells how 80 percent of the 12,000 evangelists at Amersterdam 2,000 stood to show that their lives were impacted by the martyrs who gave their lives for the Waodani tribe.

playPart Four

Mincaye tells of his first visit to America to teach the 'foreigners' to walk 'God's trail'. Steve tells how his mother wept on the set of End of the Spear when she saw the radio room where she used to communicate with her husband, Nate Saint.

playPart Three

When Mincaye learned about the Columbine tragedy, he agreed that a movie should be made of their story so that the 'foreigners' could learn to walk God's trail and not live 'badly, badly' as they did.

playPart Two

Mincaye tells how his life changed because of the love shown by the sister of Nate Saint and the widows of the men he killed.

playPart One

Steve Saint on life at the edge of the jungle and losing his father.



Related Links

End of the Spear Special Section on CBN.com

More About Missions

Check out more Missions articles on CBN.com.


In 1956, five American missionaries to Ecuador were brutally speared to death by a savage Stone Age tribe of Indians. Two years later, the wife and sister of two of the murdered missionaries walked into the jungle to live with the same people who had murdered the men they loved. Recently, CBN.com's Craig von Buseck interviewed Steve Saint and Mincaye, the man who killed his father.

Through Gates of Splendor

In 1956, Steve was five years old when his father, Nate, flew a Piper Cruiser plane with four other missionaries into the jungles of Equador and dared to make contact with the most dangerous tribe known to man, the Waodani (whoa-DONNY) also known as “Auca,” or naked savage.

After several months of exchanging gifts with the natives, the five men were speared multiple times and hacked to death with machetes.

One of the men in the tribe that fateful day was Mincaye (min-KY-yee). Years later Steve found out that Mincaye actually delivered the final spear that ultimately killed his father. (Three of the six warriors from that day are still alive.)

Today they consider themselves family and harbor no resentment. Steve says he has never forgotten the pain and heartache of losing his dad.

“But I can’t imagine not loving Mincaye, a man who has adopted me as his own, and the other Waodani,” says Steve, who made his first trip into Waodani territory when he was 9 years old.

By 1956 Steve’s Aunt Rachel had been living in the jungle but not with the Waodani for several years. Rachel loved her younger brother (Steve’s dad) like a son, but even after he was killed, she continued to live with the Waodani until her death in 1994. Her affection for them was a major influence in Steve’s life. He visited her every summer.

When he was 14, Steve and his sister, Kathy, decided to be baptized and chose a couple of Waodani to perform the baptism in the same water next to the beach where their father was killed. After Rachel died, the tribe asked Steve to live with them. (Steve and his family lived in the jungle for a year and a half.) “What the Waodani meant for evil, God used for good,” says Steve. “Given the chance to rewrite the story, I would not be willing to change it.”

Many are confounded by the relationship Steve has with Mincaye. He says that a USAToday reporter commented that if he were in Steve’s shoes, he could “forgive Mincaye, maybe. But love him, that’s morbid.” Steve says that their relationship doesn’t make sense unless you put God in the equation. Even though his dad’s death was painful, Steve says Mincaye would not have adopted him and he would not have been part of the mysterious, stoneage Waodani world. Also thousands of people, who were stirred by the missionaries’ deaths, would not have dedicated their lives to helping take the gospel to unreached groups like Waodani all over the world.

More from CBN.com's End of the Spear special section


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