The ISIS poster by Outreach Media, seen at St Columba Uniting Church in Woollahra
The St Columba Uniting Church in Sydney is one of a number of churches displaying the poster supplied by Outreach Media.
The company’s gospel-focused posters are described as a “great tool for evangelism” and “designed to engage with the community and spark conversations”.
November’s poster is inspired by the terrorist flag and features a quote from Jesus: “Love your Enemies, and pray for those who persecute you”.
The church’s minister did not want to comment on the poster, but a description on the Outreach website said: “Jesus actually requires us to get worked up over the ISIS soldier. He commands us to find love in our hearts and pray for that soldier and really mean it. Remember, Jesus loved his enemies enough to die for them at the cross.”
Passers-by did not seem concerned about the provocative display, with one saying the mixed messages around the terror group were exhausting.
“This is obviously trying to promote Christianity. At what point is it no longer about the story and becomes about the message they are trying to promote?” Woollahra resident, Jack, 22, said.
“It’s got to the stage, whenever I talk among friends, we are exhausted at the extent by which people are turning this into propaganda.
“Everyone wants to put their two cents worth in, there is this convoluted message, but at the same time everyone is still on edge.”
Another elderly woman walking past, said wasn’t sure how she felt about the use of the IS flag but said “we should all be big enough to try and understand people who are against us”.
“Muslims individually are a beautiful people, unfortunately some are persecuting the people and don’t understand it’s because of ISIS,” she said.
“I’d like to think we could all be a bit bigger than that.”
Churches have been using their signs to engage with the community for years, with one Anglican reverend gaining a huge social media following because of his irreverent and witty signs.