U.S. church holds blessing ceremony for worshippers with AR-15 rifles
NEWFOUNDLAND, Pa. — Worshippers clutching AR-15 rifles drank holy wine and exchanged wedding vows in a commitment ceremony at a Pennsylvania church.
The event Wednesday at the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary led a nearby school to cancel classes.
The Rev. Sean Moon leads the church. He said in a prayer that God gave people the right to bear arms. Moon is the son of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, a self-proclaimed messiah who founded the Unification Church, often described as a cult.
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The sanctuary believes the AR-15 symbolizes the “rod of iron” in the book of Revelation, and encouraged couples to bring the weapons to the ceremony. An AR-15 was used in the Florida high school massacre.
Several protesters held signs outside the church, including one calling the group an “armed cult.”
Here are some photos from inside the church’s ceremony, and resulting protests:
— With a file from Global News reporter Maham Abedi
© 2018 The Canadian Press