JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — A southwest Missouri church is hoping to increase its membership with promotions such as raffling semi-automatic rifles to men on Father's Day.

Joplin-based Ignite Church gave away two AR-15 rifles in the raffle, which lead pastor Heath Mooneyham says was aimed at males between 18 to 35 years old, a demographic the church hopes to draw into its ranks.

The Joplin Globe (http://bit.ly/1ixzp9T ) reports the gun giveaway drew some heated response online from people who don't think a church should be condoning weapons, violence or war.

Ignite Church made headlines in 2011 when it sponsored billboards urging married couples to have more sex to avoid vices like pornography and adultery.

___

Information from: The Joplin (Mo.) Globe, http://www.joplinglobe.com