Monday, July 14, 2008

Church Cancels Teen Gun Giveaway

Church Cancels Teen Gun Giveaway
POSTED: 10:38 pm CDT July 11, 2008
UPDATED: 8:56 am CDT July 12, 2008
(Thanks Jeff G for contributing this!)

OKLAHOMA CITY -- An Oklahoma church canceled a controversial gun giveaway for teenagers at a weekend youth conference.
Windsor Hills Baptist had planned to give away a semiautomatic assault rifle until one of the event's organizers was unable to attend.
The church’s youth pastor, Bob Ross, said it’s a way of trying to encourage young people to attend the event. The church expected hundreds of teenagers from as far away as Canada.

“We have 21 hours of preaching and teaching throughout the week,” Ross said.
A video on the church Web site shows the shooting competition from last year’s conference. A gun giveaway was part of the event last year. This year, organizers included it in their marketing.
“I don’t want people thinking ‘My goodness, we’re putting a weapon in the hand of somebody that doesn’t respect it who are then going to go out and kill,'” said Ross. “That’s not at all what we’re trying to do.”
Ross said the conference isn’t all about guns, but rather about teens finding faith.
“You make a lot of new friends down here,” said Vikki Goncharenko, who attended the conference. “You get to meet new people. There's a bunch of things that are going on. It's just, you have a wonderful time.”
Friday evening, Ross said the gun giveaway had been canceled. Pastor emeritus Jim Vineyard, who ran the event, injured his foot and wouldn’t be able to attend. The gun giveaway was also removed from the church Web site.
Ross said the church would give the gun away next year instead. He said the church spent $800 buying the gun for the promotion.
Who in their right mind could possibly think this is a good idea? They actually did this last year! Video games from the late 70's started out rather tame in comparison to today's games. The games seemed to continue to show more flesh (sex), gore (killings) and over all violence (rape, murder, robbery, etc). The world is only content for a little while until they want something more and more shocking.

Now the churches seemed to have fallen for the trap set by the Devil himself. Let's entice these children to come into our churches and we will give them a gun. When they stop coming, then it will be time to do something even more radical. Where will it end?

Jesus over turned the tables of the money changers in the Temple because they were abusing the system. Makes you wonder what Jesus will do to a church that does not have the guts to preach God's Word without stupidity being added to it!


michelle said...

Yeah, this is disturbing. One of the local churches here was giving away WII game systems back around Christmas, I thought that was pretty bad. Let's bribe people to come to church! We really are going to hell in a hand basket... eesh!

choco said...

I'm with you. That type of attraction will not bring conviction, repentance, or dedication to the Lord Jesus Christ.

From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."
(Matthew 4:17)

This is what the Lord Jesus preached and is what should be preached today.

Jeff Greathouse said...

I am not comfortable with any "gun" give away. But, if you are going to do it ......

Make it a dad/son hunting trip and give away a hunting rifle

OR have some of the 'godly grandfather' in the church who love camping/hunting take the utes out and instruct them on hunting techniques

So, you are doing an event and giving something ay but you are connecting and mentoring them in the process and giving them a skill

but from the outside what the weekend looks like and the type of gun they are giving away seems scary

i could be wrong about it but ow

pastorbrianculver said...

Wouldn't this be every parents nitemare?

little billy
"Hey mom and dad, can I have a raise on my allowance."

mom and dad
"No, son, we don't think now is the right time."

little billy holding his semiautomatic assault rifle says...
"are you sure you don't want to give me a raise?????? in fact, how about letting me take your car and all of your money??!!!!!"

Having someone who is a Green Beret thinking it is a good idea to put a gun into the hands of a youth (someone he does not even know!) is not going to be a good idea. Am I wrong, was the person who won it, the person who was able to win a shooting competition??

Can't you just see all of the thugs from off the street coming to this youth rally in order to get an automatic assault rifle?

Isn't it so convenient that they cancelled the event after the media heard about it. I don't think that any church should cancel what they are doing because of the media (unless of course they are doing something as idiotic as this is!)

Jeff Greathouse said...


They are saying that it is cancelled because the Pastor who is the gun enthusiast can not be there because of his surgery and not the media pressure .....

They are saying that the event will go on as usual and then next ear, they will have the event with the gun ...

So, I am not sure if it is the surgery of the media pressure

Anonymous said...

Maybe this isn't the best idea. On the other hand this is Oklahoma we are talking about. I am from this wonderful state and I know for a fact what kind of people live there. In one word: Hunters.

Paul mentioned about becoming all things to all men so that we might save some. Maybe they are trying to say that Jesus even likes people who use guns to shoot fury little animals so they can eat them.

Times have changed I suppose. My dad, who is 56, was hunting by himself when he was 6 years old. He is very responsible with a gun and has taught me to be the same.

I do have to say that most kids shouldn't be out with guns hunting by themselves today because quite frankly I haven't met any kids who are responsible at the age of 6.

Really, unless they are giving the gun to a gangster I am not sure I see what is wrong with the idea.

pastorbrianculver said...

I know Jeff, it could be either case. It just seems strange that just one hour after the tv station did their interview, the interviewer called back and it was cancelled!

Jeff Greathouse said...

I agree.

If the church has a conviction that this is what they should do (however wrong it is), they should have the conviction to do it and not be driven by the media.

I am not sure if that sounds right in my quick comment. If not, I will flush it out when I get back from the free medical clinic.

pastorbrianculver said...

Hi simply, I lived in OKC back in 2003. I know what you are saying. Hunting is really big around here. The issue of giving an assault rifle away is completley different than giving away a BB gun or a regular rifle. My problem is that too many churches have to use gimmicks to bring people into the church. The job of the church is to train and equip the saints to go out into the world to reach the lost. Too many pastors get lazy when it comes to properly training the church members. I would want to ask the kids what it takes to be saved. My guess is that most of them could not give us an answer.

pastorbrianculver said...

kind of makes a person wonder...

How would we behave if everything we did was going to be broadcast on national TV?

Jeff Greathouse said...


I agree on culture and I am one on here that would push more than most on this blog.

HOWEVER, there is a HUGE difference between a hunting rifle and an assult weapon - EVEN if the assult weapn is usued in "target games" (IMO)

pastorbrianculver said...

that's right Jeff, this is one of the very few times that we have actually been in agreement!

Mike said...

I've encountered some people from this church, and I am surprised to hear this about them because they regularly have people out in the town doing door-to-door evangelism and open-air preaching each weekend.

They are, however, one of those independent Baptist, fundamentalist, strict-dress-code enforcing, KJV-only (pretty sure) churches, which could possibly cast some doubt on their legitimacy.

I don't know much more about them beyond that, but regardless, it is a pretty dumb way to attract people to church.

Guns instead of the Gospel... go figure.