Understanding Rifqa Bary’s Ties to Lou Engle

One of the questions regarding the whole Rifqa Bary saga that has been lingering is how exactly she ever ended up becoming involved with Lou Engle and appearing on the prayer call he organized a few weeks back.

As it turns out, Bary had been involved with Engle’s efforts back in Ohio before she even ran away, though her connection to Brian Williams, who not only baptized her but also drove her to the bus station when she ran away. 

As Bary explained during her interview with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement [PDF], she had met Williams through her activism with Engle’s “Bound for Life” in Ohio. Eventually, Williams moved to Kansas City to go to work for Engle’s International House of Prayer.

Below is a shortened version of the exchange during the FDLE interview in which Bary explains her ties to Williams and to Engle’s right wing activism [“DL” is Daivd Lee, an FDLE agent and “FB” is Rifqa Bary]: 

DL: Who baptized you?

FB: Brian Williams

DL: Was he your minister?

FB: Yeah, basically. Yeah, well he’s a good friend, Ohio State friend and is basically going into ministry …

DL: Ohio State friend, so he’s a student at Ohio State?

FB: Um, graduated already.

DL: Okay.

FB: Lives in Kansas City now, but yeah he was the one that baptized me …

FB: You know how I even met Brian? It was through, it was last winter, we met. I heard about I’m Pro Life, you know.

DL: Okay.

FB: And um there was something called, he did a chapter leader for Columbus for Bound for Life. Have you guys ever heard of it?

DL: Bound for Life? No, I haven’t

FB: Bound for Life is basically through an organization by Lou Engle, who started The Call, if you guys know of Lou Engle.

DL: I’ve heard the name.

FB: Lou Engle, yes he’s like my hero. He really is and basically we do is, there’s red tape and you write “life” on it in black letters and we just stand outside with it and pray. It’s not a protesting, it’s a prayer movement if anything.

DL: Um-hum.

FB: And we just stand outside in a circle, outside these clinics, we don’t say anything to anyone, you know we’re not allowed to talk to them, we just pray outside there.

DL: Um-hum.

FB: And he was a chapter leader there so I met him there and actually I was sneaking out to go hear that I even met him. And every time I talked to him all we did talk about was like my parents. And he was really afraid for me as well …

DL: And you said Brian was the only one who was willing to really baptize you?

FB: Yeah, ’cause I mean if my parents found out they would get in trouble and their would be at stake and all that sort of thing.

DL: You say he’s in Kansas City now?

FB: Kansas City. International House of Prayer. IHOP.