A pastor discovered this massive diamond.
A pastor discovered this massive diamond. (Sierra Leone State House/Handout via Reuters)

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A pastor discovered a whopping 706-carat diamond outside his village in Sierra Leone, according to reports.

The pastor, Emmanuel Momoh, also has a mining permit. He says he was individually mining for diamonds outside his village when he made the discovery.

The diamond is roughly the size of a hockey puck and the second-largest found in Sierra Leone. In 1972, the miners unearthed a 968.9-carat, now called the Star of Sierra Leone. It later sold for about $2.5 million. 

Momoh handed his discovery over to the government, which will auction off the gem. The pastor is entitled to a percent of the future sale of the diamond, minus government and income taxes, Forbes reports.

"A gift from God, and it will be a terrible thing if anyone tries to do something criminal with it," Sierra Leone President Ernest Bai Koroma said

Momoh's discovery will rank somewhere between the 10th and 15th largest diamond ever found. Forbes says it's incredibly rare that an independent artisanal miner was to find such a large diamond.

Jessilyn Justice @jessilynjustice is the director of online news for Charisma.

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