Church that accents guns, takes root at Lake Limestone

Posted at 7:02 PM, Jun 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-17 21:27:20-04

LIMESTONE COUNTY, TX — Some of our new neighbors in Texas, include a religious group with an affinity for guns, which sometimes find their way into worship services.

Sound familiar?

It might to some, but as 25 News found, Rod of Iron Ministries, insists its beliefs are not only right, they're constitutional.

The new neighbors at Lake Limestone, the gun tote'n,Trump-lovin' Rod of Iron Ministries, own the newly renamed Freedom Rock at Running Branch Marina.

People we talked to, say, the church's beliefs don't bother them a bit, As long as members follow the law like everybody else, they support them.

"Second Amendment, they have a right to carry and bear arms. They don't bother me and I won't bother them," said Randy Ingram of Groesbeck.

The new operators call the church's involvement here a "business investment".

"Yes, this is, this is definitely a business that relies on serving the community, and in exchange they provide us with business in order to pay the bills and operate this," said Kyle Yoder, who operates Liberty Rock at Running Branch Marina, with his wife, Dyella.

They aim to create a "safe space" for gun owners here.

The church caused a stir at is Pennsylvania home-base, when it did things like hold a church ceremony to bless the congregation's AK-47's and other guns, but that was Pennsylvania.

In the South, especially in Texas, guns have a place in our culture.

But Rod of Iron Ministries doesn't joke about guns.

"We thank them for defending all our rights, especially our right to have the Rod of Iron. Because in other countries, you can't have it," said Hyung Jin "Sean" Moon, Pastor of Rod of Iron Ministries.

Church doctrine teaches preparedness, responsible gun ownership and a desire to protect life, property and neighbors.

Rod of Iron celebrates those values every year in it's Pennsylvania "Freedom Festival."

It's something we could eventually see at Lake Limestone.

"Any talk about bringing the freedom festival here are some point? Yes, they're, Well, we're working on doing all kinds of live music and one of the, one of the ideas is to have the freedom festival a open carry legal responsible festival," said Yoder.

As for other Rod of Iron plans here, Pastor Moon mentioned some of what he'd like to see here, during his sermon at the Marina earlier this year.

"Here at Liberty rock as well. We have a wonderful future training areas.

Hunting and fishing, hunting training workshops that study i the word," said Pastor Moon.

Those a little nervous about the ministry hope THAT doesn't turn out like that of an infamous religious group that put Waco on the map a generation ago.

The 1993 standoff between the FBI and the Branch Davidians, left as many as 75 people dead, including leader David Koresh, and left the church's compound at Mount Carmel in ruins.

Pastor Moon worked to assuage those fears, by further explaining his vision for Liberty Rock.

"fishing and out there on the boats and out there in hunting the wild boars serve.

And all of these things help us unlock those other connects, will allow us to become more capable citizens of the kingdom of God," he said.

While most neighbors here seem generally supportive of the Ministry's move here, several say, they'll take a "wait-and-see" approach.

"What they are doing now is between the lord and themselves. He will be the final judge, not me," explained Roy Brehm, a church deacon who lives at the lake.

A few apparently did judge though, after a critical "Vice News" article came out at the end of May.

Yoder says, the next day, the local bank announced it would close the marina's account.

Yoder says the bank didn't explain it to him. The bank certainly didn't explain it to us.

Meantime, the marina's new operators, say, when you believe in your neighbors, and in your ability to keep the peace through strength, you can't go wrong.

"That is what of course Liberty rock stands for its value of protecting of liberty, but also it's the rock set on the rock of Christ set on the principles of God. Love God, Love your neighbor," said Pastor Moon.

Believers at Rod of Iron say that's something we should all be able to agree on