Pastor Brings Live Lion and Lamb on Stage for Sermon

Fellowship Church has campuses in Dallas, Fort Worth, Plano and Miami

The Grapevine pastor who made headlines for encouraging his congregation to have seven days of sex is making headlines again.

A video on the website for Fellowship Church in Grapevine shows Ed Young, the pastor, holding a live lamb in his arms while a live lion sat in a cage on stage during his Easter Sunday sermon series "The Wild."

Pegasus News first reported on animal advocates concerned about exploiting live animals during worship.

Sylvia Elzafon, who said he was a former Texas campaign coordinator for Mercy for Animals, emailed NBC 5 to say: "I think the fact that this pastor is using live, caged, and terrified animals (see 4-day-old terrified baby lamb, and caged lion taunted to act ferocious) as props to convey a message of compassion should be brought to the public's attention."

But others approved. Chris Prater posted on Twitter: "One of the most powerful Easter messages in history from @EdYoung."

Fellowship Church issued this statement Monday:

Here at Fellowship Church, we honor and worship God as the ultimate creator. We believe that all of creation, including each one of us, was designed and created to reflect different aspects of God's character.

That's what we're celebrating in this series.

We were very excited about the thousands who joined us this past weekend and believe fully in the message they heard about God's plan and purpose for their life through Jesus Christ.

It is very important to us that our guests also gain a greater respect and honor for God's creation during this series. And we have several things planned to continue to promote the compassionate care of animals, including a "Dog Days" weekend of April 28-29, where we are inviting everyone to bring out their dogs for several pet-friendly activities.

We are passionate about partnering with people and organizations who share God's standard and respect for animals, and have a long history of doing so. And we look forward to the amazing life change that we believe this series will bring about.

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