Church Pulls 'Hell' Sign After Police Probe
Attleborough Baptist Church's sign was seen as 'hateful'
By Neal Colgrass, Newser Staff
Posted May 24, 2014 4:19 PM CDT

(Newser) – A Baptist church has agreed to take down a sign about hell after police investigated the message as a "hate incident," reports the Daily Mail. It all started when a passerby in Norfolk, England, complained about the sign, which suggested non-Christians would burn in hell, showing flames below the words, "If you think there is no God you better be right!" Robert Gladwin, 20, said he considered Christianity "inclusive and loving in nature," but found the sign conveyed the opposite message: "I was just astounded really." Pastor John Rose, 69, removed the sign and said he "regretted" how Gladwin interpreted the message.

"Jesus encourages us to love," Rose said, "and we therefore regret that the poster has been seen as inciting hatred." Surprisingly, humanists and secularists appeared to oppose Gladwin's complaint—saying the sign was too silly to take seriously, or should be protected under free speech—and a nearby reverend criticized the sign, saying the church should find "more positive reasons for coming to church." As for the nation's Baptist organization, representing 2,000 churches, it stayed on the sidelines: "We don't issue posters to [churches] and it is generally up to them what they put up," a spokesman told the Express.

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Showing 3 of 222 comments
May 25, 2014 10:44 PM CDT
I agree with those humanists and secularists. Nothing personally threatening or offensive in that sign. If you actually don't believe in God, this poster is funny at best and annoying at worst. Only a person who was actually worried about Hell could find it concerning. Free speech, people. Nothing worth getting angry about here. This was an unfortunate decision all around.
May 25, 2014 5:12 PM CDT
Hate crime? hmm must have offended those idiots like the ones that beheaded the soldier over there
May 25, 2014 1:07 PM CDT
There have been some very attractive church signs. One in London said, 'What's missing from 'CH CH' -- UR'. A clever one from Pikesville, Baltimore said, ' Remember the weekday to keep it holy.'