An evangelical church in a shopping mall has opened a tattoo parlor, and the presiding pastor says its about being “relevant”:
FLINT TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) —
A Michigan pastor who says he’s doing everything he can to reach out to people who don’t feel comfortable at a traditional house of worship has opened a tattoo parlor inside his church.
Rev. Steve Bentley of The Bridge, a church located inside a Flint Township shopping center, said his ministry is built on the belief that mainstream religion has become ineffective and irrelevant to most people. To that end, he opened Serenity Tattoo.
Tattoo artists Ryan Brown and Drew Blaisdell work by appointment or from noon until 8 p.m., Monday-Saturday, at the county-licensed tattoo shop that sits not far from Bentley’s office as well as the watering trough that he uses for baptisms.Bentley, who has two tattoos, said he understands some don’t like the idea of Serenity Tattoo inside the church, but the pastor considers tattooing a “morally neutral” practice that he likens to getting one’s ears pierced.