A California church that support anti-LGBTQ beliefs and has been the recent target of protests was intoxicated with an impromptu shocking device early Saturday morning, authorities said.

The First Works Baptist Church in El Monte, California, just east of downtown Los Angeles, was shaken by a blast in the early morning hours Saturday, according to the FBI.

When reaction to the incident just after 1 a.m. local time there was burning discovered from the windows and the church premises was enclosed with graffiti, the Los Angeles County Fire Department said.

“It appeared that the walls to the church had been vandalized as well as all the windows,” El Monte police Lt. Christopher Cano told reporters Saturday. “[The windows] appeared at first to be smashed, then we realized that the windows were not smashed, that they had actually blown out from some type of explosion.”

The FBI referred to the incident as an “IED attack” and said bomb technicians were on the scene to investigate the causes of the incident.


The church’s doctrine against gay marriage have caused castigation and protests. An online petition by Keep El Monte Friendly, a team that gathered the protests against First Works Baptist Church, to fire the church from El Monte has received more than 15,000 signatures.

Researchers at the Southern Poverty Law Center have classified the church as one of 70 hate church in the country that advocate anti-LGBTQ general thoughts.

It is part of the New Independent Fundamental Baptist Movement, more than 24 churches in the United States that are connected with anti-LGBTQ pastor Steven Anderson. Anderson has been suspended from 34 countries of the world for his wordcraft that calls for the deaths of LGBTQ group, according to the civil rights group.

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