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WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A marquee in front of a local church is turning heads, starting conversations and even stopping cars.
Many people know Wrightsville Avenue’s Church of God is for its marquees, and the church’s pastor, Marvin Gwinn, says it's his First Amendment right to put what he wants on the sign.
He says the sign currently on display is “no big deal” and refused to do an interview with WECT.com because he said it "would take away from the message." It reads, “Staying in bed shouting Oh God does not constitute going to church."
The sign has been up for a few weeks and is meant to make people think and motivate them to go to church, according to Gwinn.
“I think it’s people that are just trying to get a reaction, and I think if you give them a reaction, that's what they want,” said Tyler Gemmel, who has seen the sign but doesn’t think it’s offensive. “I find it surprising that a church would do that. I can see where it would offend some people, but it doesn't offend me."
Some nearby business owners on Castle Street say it's a sensitive subject that could hurt their business, but many of them laughed when asked about it, saying they think it's really funny.
Nearby neighbors say they've taken a picture of it and put it on Facebook to show their friends.
The church also has two other signs in its front yard that’s sparking conversations around town.
The first one reads, “Don’t criticize your wife’s judgement. Look who she married," while another reads, “You have a new friend request from Jesus. Confirm-Ignore.”
Most people said they enjoy reading the signs that they claim are “humorous but true.”
Some say they've actually seen a number of cars stop by and people take a picture in front of the marquee.
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