Group Offers Alternative To 'Open Carry' Church Celebration

A gun-themed celebration at the New Bethel Church in Louisville has prompted a peace-themed celebration by Interfaith Paths to Peace.

New Bethel Church is asking parishioners to bring unloaded guns to a church social on Saturday evening. Rather than protest the service, Interfaith Paths to Peace is sponsoring an alternative event in eastern Jefferson County.

IPP director Terry Taylor says the New Bethel event could send some people the wrong message.

“With what we’ve been hearing in the news lately about troubles and shootings in churches and other places, the idea of bringing even unloaded guns into a public space seems to me to be kind of problematic,” says Taylor.

But New Bethel Pastor Ken Pagano says his “Open Carry Celebration” is not a worship service and will preach responsible gun ownership.

“I have more to fear from the person driving down the highway from a person with a cell phone texting or twittering than I do from a responsible firearms owner,” says Pagano.

Pagano and Taylor plan to meet after the two events.