More tributes pour in for Myles Munroe as funeral date announced

Pastor Myles Munroe and his wife, Ruth.Twitter

The funeral of Pastor Myles Munroe, who died on November 9 in a plane crash, will be held on December 4, it has been announced.

Two services will be held in total, with a National Memorial Service of Thanksgiving and Praise on December 3, followed by the official funeral or Home Going Service for Dr Munroe and his wife, Ruth, who also died in the accident, the next day.

The funeral will be hosted at Bahamas Faith Ministries International (BFMI) Diplomat Centre in Nassau.

Additional events leading up to these services will also soon be announced. The funeral for Pastor Richard Pinter, Munroe's deputy, another casualty of the accident, will take place on December 2.

A statement from the Board of Trustees at BFMI says: "We have literally been flooded with calls and well wishes from all over the world. We have also received a number of phone calls from several Head of States including Presidents of Countries, Prime Ministers as well as well known Pastors, Singers, Actors and Dignitaries expressing their sympathies and who have all indicated a commitment to attend."

"On behalf of the Family of Dr Myles and Pastor Ruth Munroe and Dr Richard Pinder, we would once again like to thank the Bahamian people as well as people from around the world for their expressions of love, well wishes and support. It truly means a lot to us."

The Munroes, Pinder and his family were killed when their private jet hit a shipyard construction crane as it flew into Grand Bahama International Airport earlier this month.

A well-known religious leader in the region, Pastor Munroe was on his way to host a church conference, the Global Leadership Forum, in Freeport.

Following the tragedy, the Prime Minister of the Bahamas publicly mourned the loss of his "personal friend and spiritual mentor".

"It is utterly impossible to measure the magnitude of Dr Munroe's loss to The Bahamas and to the world," Perry Christie said in a statement.

"He was indisputably one of the most globally recognisable religious figures our nation has ever produced. His fame as an ambassador for the Christian ministry preceded him wherever in the world he travelled, whether in the Caribbean, North America, Asia, Europe or Africa."

Leader of the Opposition Dr Hubert Minnis also expressed his condolences. "Tonight my heart is heavy and like millions around the world we are deeply saddened by this tragic loss of one of the world's most noted spiritual leaders," he said in a statement released the night of the incident.

"This tragedy is both difficult to comprehend and accept but we know that Pastor Myles and his colleagues and family all enjoyed a deep and personal relationship with God and as such are resting in his arms."

However, critics have denounced Munroe as a "false teacher", after footage from a sermon in which he declared "Jesus is not the Gospel" was shared on the internet.

"Jesus preached the gospel of the Kingdom. He did not preach himself," Munroe said in the 45 minute talk.

"The good news is not Calvary. The good news is not about even the resurrection...The Gospel of the Kingdom is the only true Gospel."

"Do you know why the people on your job really hate Christians right now? Because you are preaching to them Jesus Christ. You don't [need to] be talking about blood and nails and the spear in His side, because that's not what you're supposed to be talking about. You've got to be talking about how to solve people's problems," Munroe added.

"People aren't worried about no blood on no cross. They're worried about how they're going to make it through the day."

Despite this criticism, Munroe's children have shared their gratitude for the support they have received in the days following their parents' death.

In a statement online, Myles Munroe Jr and his sister Charisa write: "We would like to take this time to address all of you here and everyone around the world that has shown their support and expressed their condolences during this difficult time.

We want you all to know that in spite of the recent tragedy...we all have comfort in knowing that God is in control. We know there are many questions as to how or why something like this would be allowed to happen to such great individuals, but yet still God is in control."

The pair continue: "We would like to make it known that although we are all grieving our losses and are deeply saddened by this tragic event, we have never been nor will we ever feel hopeless. There is no question in our hearts that the spirits of the nine persons whose lives were taken are now resting with our Heavenly Father. We rejoice for we know they are in a better place watching over all of us and rejoicing amongst the heavenly angels.

"We will not allow death to claim any victory, but we celebrate the life and legacy of each individual. This tragedy does not mark the end; the end of life, the end of a vision, the end of a journey, nor the end of a purpose, but it marks the new beginning of an era. An era of a new generation that will carry on the vision and legacy of our father and mother and of each individual whose life was lost so unexpectedly.

"So let's not mourn their deaths but let's celebrate their lives and find joy in knowing that although God may not explain himself, he will reveal himself. In the words of our father, 'The greatest tragedy in life is not death, but a life without a purpose.' We know there is a greater purpose in all of this and we are now the vessels for this new vision and legacy to be carried on."