Reading Time: 2 minutes

Nothing signifies the Christmas season like a pastor giving away murder weapons to members of his congregation.

Pastor Todd Holmes of The River of Tri-Cities Church in Johnson City, Tennessee plans to give away two AR-15 semi-automatic rifles during next weekend’s services. (“One in the morning, one in the evening!”)

Pastor Todd Holmes of The River of Tri-Cities Church in Tennessee announces an AR-15 giveaway just in time for Christmas… h/t @newvangelicals— Christian Nightmares (@ChristnNitemare) December 14, 2021

Hey, this is Pastor Todd Holmes, and I wanna tell you, I encourage you to be here December 19. We’re gonna have a giveaway. These two AR-15s are gonna be given away, one in the morning, one in the evening. You have an opportunity to win these guns if you are of age and legal status. You can get a ticket in any service that you come to, between now and that date. Every service you attend, you have an opportunity to enter one more time…

While the giveaway is legal — the guns will only be given to adults who meet all the requirements to own them — it’s telling that this is what symbolizes the faith for someone like Holmes. These people never give away a manger, or doves, or a fancy Nativity scene. They never even give away basic hunting rifles. But they have no problem equating Jesus with AR-15s. Why bother turning the other cheek when you can just blow people’s brains out?

If you didn’t notice, take a closer look at Holmes’ shirt, which spells out “Love” with weapons used to injure or kill people.

Again, the giveaway may be legal, but the message should be troubling to everyone, especially other Christians. These people are, at the very least, celebrating the possibility of murdering their enemies. They’re using that as an incentive to bring people into their violence-loving church. That’s what Jesus taught them to do.

(via Christian Nightmares and The New Evangelicals)

Hemant Mehta is the founder of, a YouTube creator, podcast co-host, and author of multiple books about atheism. He can be reached at @HemantMehta.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments