Oregon church declares transgenders have 'heartbeats' too, slams white supremacy in political street signs
A church in Oregon is drawing a lot of attention for its politically-charged signs.
Pastor Rev. Adam Ericksen of the Clackamas United Church of Christ in Milwaukie, Oregon goes out on the church lawn every week to post a message on a marquee sign next to the street just like thousands of other pastors. But his messages of late have particularly stood out.
Ericksen, on Tuesday, slammed white supremacy through the marquee sign and advocated for political activist Harriet Tubman's place on the $20 bill.
As "heartbeat" abortion bills became law last week in a number of American states, the pastor reminded churchgoers and those driving by that transgender people have heartbeats too.
The pastor, while talking to CNN, said that he decided to begin changing the signs at the church nearly a year and a half ago. The institution reportedly has nearly 30 reliable attendees every Sunday, according to reports.
Ericksen said that he was looking for means to spread his message in the community and build his flock like any pastor and "the best way to do that is with this sign," he said.
Ericksen added that ever since he started writing these signs, his flock has nearly doubled with 50 to 60 people filling the pews every week.
The pastor reportedly posts Biblically-inspired messages based on his sermon, or whatever is happening in the news.
He said the reaction to the messages have been positive so far.
Ericksen said that there has been "almost no criticism from the local community."
However, people occasionally tell him that his signs are a bit political.
"Jesus preached the kingdom of God, and this was politically loaded message," Ericksen said. "His harshest message was for religious leaders who marginalized people."
The outlet reported that drivers honk in support as they pass by the sign and the messages have become a major hit on social media, with some getting over 10,000 shares on Facebook.
"We've gotten hundreds of messages, including from transgender people who say they wish they had a church like this in their area," he said. "People are thirsty to know they are loved. In every area, there are pockets thirsting for this message of radical inclusion."
Ericksen, over the past months, has written multiple positive, all-inclusive and acceptive messages mentioning Muslims, immigrants, African-Americans, the LGBT community, and the sick and the poor, saying God loves all.