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Tattoos, Leather Vests and God: A Look at a Motorcycle Ministry's Blessing of the Bikers

March 17, 2014 | WMFE, Orlando - Thousands of bikers are on their way back from Daytona Beach's yearly Bike Week, which wrapped up Sunday. But a few of them will leave with more than just a tan.

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Bobby Milne of Heaven's Saints Motorcycle Ministry stands outside the group's tent on Thunder Alley in Daytona Beach. The group performed a 'Blessing of the Bikers' on the last Saturday of Bike Week. Photo: Carmel Delshad | WMFE.

It’s not every day that you see members of a ministry tatted up from the neck down. But then again, Heaven’s Saints Motorcycle Ministry isn’t a run of the mill church group.

“We look like bikers, we act like bikers, everything that they stereotype, and we’re talking about the lord,” says John Zammetti, president of the ministry.

One of the group’s main functions is the Biker Blessing—a prayer to watch over any biker who wants one, says Donna Zammetti.

“Most people bless bikes, we bless bikers. Because the bike is made of metal,” Donna Zammetti says.

In the midst of the drinking and partying atmosphere of Bike Week, John and Donna Zammetti say they’re there to lead bikers on a different path.:

“The road they’re on, at the end of that road is death,” John Zammetti says.

His wife, Donna, adds:

“Most of us came out of that lifestyle, with the drinking and the drugs.”

It's a far cry from where they are now. 

The group of 6 people form a semi-circle, close their eyes and bow their heads as a member recites a prayer:

“Bless these riders and their motorcycles, lord. Put a shield of protection around these riders and their passengers..."

After prayer, the group hops back on their motorcycles and rides back to their tent. Inside, there’s a table in remembrance of bikers who’ve died, and a board to sign in support of the military. In the middle of the bars and posters of scantily clad women, their tent is a somber reminder of the dangers of riding a motorcycle.

And group member Bobby Milne says a little prayer can go a long way for the bikers:

“All of us want a guardian angel when we’re riding,” says Milne.


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