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Pastor dies after attempting to fast for 40 days like Jesus

By Brooke Villanueva Published Feb 20, 2023 11:42 am Updated Feb 20, 2023 1:40 pm

A pastor has died after trying to emulate Jesus’ 40-day fast as narrated in the Bible.

According to a report by BBC News, Francisco Barajah—the founder of the Santa Trindade Evangelical Church—passed away just 25 days into his attempt. He had a drastic weight loss after trying to survive without food and water for days, “to the point where he could not stand up,” which later on led to his death. 

The 39-year-old was diagnosed with acute anemia and organ failure.

Doctors gave him serums and liquid food in an attempt to save his life, but it was too late. 

The members of the church he founded said it was “common for the pastor and his followers to fast, but not for that long.” 

His brother Marques Manual Barajah acknowledged that the pastor did try to fast like Jesus, but insisted that he suffered from low blood pressure and not the medical diagnosis that his doctors previously stated.

According to BBC, this isn’t the first time that an attempt to copy Jesus’ fast turned deadly. The media outlet reported that a man from Zimbabwe who tried to do the same thing died after 30 days in 2015, while a woman passed away just 20 days into the same fast in London.

Based on Guinness World Records, the longest recorded case of survival with no food and water is 18 days, held by Andreas Mihavecz of Austria in 1979. He was locked in a holding cell on April 1 and was discovered "close to death" on April 18. He was 18 years old at the time.

There are no exact answers as to how long each individual can survive without food and water, but CBC News said in a report that in general terms, "the human body can go two to three days without water and, it is often said in survival guides, 30 to 40 days without food of any kind."