The militant, pro-Trump religious group that uses AR-15s during services has purchased a 130-acre property in Tennessee with the intent of turning it into a holy retreat and training center. The congregation, Rod of Iron Ministries, is led by devout conspiracy theorist Pastor Hyung Jin “Sean” Moon. Moon is known for wearing a metal crown studded with polished bullets and carrying a gold-plated semi-automatic rifle. Moon said in a recent online sermon that the Tennessee property had triggered a “spiritual download” in him. “Many, many, many busloads of people are going to come to pray there,” Moon said, “and do ancestor liberation there.” He added he planned to build a divinity school, elementary school, and MAGA politician incubator on the property.
Moon’s gun-loving sect is an offshoot of the larger organization known as the Unification Church, founded by Rev. Sun Myung Moon, a self-proclaimed messiah and the younger Moon’s father. The elder Moon has run ancestor liberation workshops known as “ansu,” intensive weeks-long ordeals that ex-church members have said were spiritually and physically abusive. A spokesperson for the younger Moon told VICE News that the Tennessee property would not be “repeating… excesses” like ansu. VICE News reported that a property they had identified as Rod of Iron Ministries’ newest acquisition was listed for $460,000 on Zillow.