Church Holds ‘Blessing’ Ceremony Featuring AR-15s

Worshippers at the controversial World Peace and Unification Sanctuary in Pennsylvania held a commitment ceremony on Feb. 28, 2018, featuring crowns, prayers and AR-15 rifles. At least one school in the area has canceled classes.

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Jacqueline Larma/AP
A man wears a crown and suit as he holds an unloaded weapon at the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary.
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Jacqueline Larma/AP
A woman has her weapon checked and zip-tied at the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary. Attendees were encouraged to bring rifles, so long as they were unloaded and zip-tied.
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Jacqueline Larma/AP
Men wear crowns as they hold unloaded weapons at the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary.
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Jacqueline Larma/AP
Attendees cheer at the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary in Newfoundland, Pennsylvania.
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Jacqueline Larma/AP
A woman closes her eyes as she clutches her unloaded rifle during services at the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary.
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Steven Fisher/NBC10 Philadelphia
Attendees wearing crowns and clutching rifles participate in a commitment ceremony at the Pennsylvania based church. Its leader, the Rev. Sean Moon, is the son of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon who founded the Unification Church in the 1950s.
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Steven Fisher/NBC10 Philadelphia
An attendee sticks a red carnation in his unloaded rifle at a commitment ceremony at the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary.
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Steven Fisher/NBC10 Philadelphia
Members of the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary exchange vows as attendees wear crowns and clutch at unloaded rifles in the audience on Feb. 28, 2018.
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Steven Fisher/NBC10 Philadelphia
Protestors stand outside the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary in Newfoundland, Pennsylvania, to demonstrate against the Sanctuary's decision to allow AR-15s at Wednesday morning's commitment ceremony. The ceremony follows a mass shooting at a Florida high school. Seventeen people died when a teenaged gunman opened fire at the school.
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Steven Fisher/NBC10 Philadelphia
Protestors stand outside the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary in Newfoundland, Pennsylvania, to demonstrate against the Sanctuary's decision to allow AR-15s at Wednesday morning's commitment ceremony. The ceremony follows a mass shooting at a Florida high school. Seventeen people died when a teenaged gunman opened fire at the school.
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Steven Fisher/NBC10 Philadelphia
Artwork featuring a rifle and a handgun are seen inside the World Peace and Unification Sanctuary in Newfoundland, Pennsylvania.
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