An Opelika, Alabama, ministry has apologized for using a quote attributed to Nazi Germany dictator Adolf Hitler in a billboard message about children, and will take it down.
"We are pulling the billboard and certainly never intended to cause confusion. ... Herbert Hoover would have been a far better one to quote when he said, 'Children are our most valuable resource,'" Life-Savers Ministries founder James Anderegg told the Ledger-Enquirer. "We are a children's organization and had honorable intentions and nothing less."
The billboard in question features five smiling children beneath the quote "He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future," which is taken from a speech Hitler made in 1935. The dictator's name is listed next to the quote.
Beneath the children is also a quote from Proverbs 22:6, which reads: "Train a child in the way that he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it."
Lamar Advertising's Montgomery office noted that the billboard was rented by the ministry.
Twitter user Mandi Murphy snapped a photo of the billboard before it was taken down, writing: "Does anyone else see a problem here? Hitler quoted with scripture on a billboard? Is it just me? Seems disturbing. "
Life-Savers Ministries, which describes itself as a Sunday School, did not respond to phone calls and emails from The Christian Post by press time.
According to its official website, the ministry was founded in 1996, and was birthed "out of a need."
"A need to reach the weakest and the forgotten, the 'at risk' children from the roughest areas, the areas where most either speed by or shun altogether. We believe we have a responsibility that we cannot dodge," the ministry explains. "In our teaching we are giving our children the time, attention, respect, and commitment they deserve and our God requires.