A Lutheran pastor from North Dakota, USA, has caused a stir on social media after comparing the plight of the trans community to Jesus being betrayed and crucified.
In a viral video, Pastor Micah Louwagie can be heard making the comparison and likening it to the treatment of Audrey Hale, a 28-year-old who killed six people at a Nashville Christian school last month.
Pastor Louwagie made the remarks during an Easter sermon she delivered on April 2nd.
She told the St. Mark's Lutheran Church congregation: "Instead of focusing on ways this could've been prevented, such as gun control, a significant number of people have turned their attention to the shooter's identity."
She continued: "Instead of focusing on the number one cause of child death in this country is now gunshot wounds.
"Some folks have tried to focus on eradicating trans people as a solution, because they have been waiting, just waiting for an opportunity such as this. They've been waiting for a reason, any reason to stoke their hatred."
The pastor then criticises those who abandon and betray transgender people, comparing them to Jesus's disciples who fled when he was arrested.
"Marginalised folks, those of us with the least amount of privilege and power, they need those who have more privilege and power than they do to physically place their bodies between them and the people, powers and institutions that are literally killing them," Pastor Louwagie added.
She also compared the Pharisees' treatment of Jesus to politicians legislating against drag shows and transgender athletes.
The video, shared by Twitter user 'Woke Preacher Clips', has garnered over 130,000 views.
Premier has reached out to St. Mark's Lutheran Church for comment.