A pastor in Oregon seized the opportunity to spend $3,000 in church money to win an AR-15 rifle — so he could do away with it.
“This one gun will never be used to kill anyone in a school, in a nightclub, anywhere else,” Reverend Jeremy Lucas told KPTV-TV. “It will never be used to terrorize anyone, it will never be used for anything destructive. That’s the one thing I can do.”
Lucas, who works for the Christ Church Episcopal Parish in Lake Oswego, said he was “disturbed” after reading that the weapon was being given away in a raffle benefiting a local girls’ softball team shortly after the fatal police shootings in Baton Rouge, Louisiana earlier this month.
According to The Oregonian, Lucas bought 150 of the 499 available tickets using some of the church’s discretionary funds. He used the money for the raffle instead of buying several smaller guns, he said, because he also wanted to help the team raise enough money to compete in a tournament in California.
“I want to live in a world where a girl’s softball team doesn’t have to raffle off a gun because it’s the quickest way to make money,” he said.
KATU-TV reported that Lucas cannot take possession of the weapon until he passes a background check. In the meantime, he is working with local artists in an effort to turn the gun into a symbol of something more positive.
“I happen to believe that the world is going to be a better place when there are fewer guns in it,” he said.
Watch KPTV’s report, as aired on Tuesday, below.