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Oakland minister’s funeral turns into a holy war

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A funeral for a minister turned into a holy war as members of two dueling churches beat each other with fists and chairs.

At least 15 police officers spent two hours trying to separate the warring sides Tuesday. No major injuries were reported.The fracas broke out during the early afternoon ceremony at Restoration Christian Ministries Church, police said.

About 40 funeral-goers, many dressed in their Sunday best, were involved in the scuffle, which began in the church and continued outside on the narrow residential street.

Witnesses told police the fight stemmed from a dispute between two churches that stretched back 16 years, when members of one congregation split off to form a new church. Police did not release names of the churches.