The REAL Haters will be here this weekend

Sunday, April 18th, the infamous Westboro Baptist Church will be bringing their wretched show to town. This is that incredibly noxious “God Hates Fags” church led by Fred Phelps and his deranged family. According to their website, they will be coming to Gainesville to protest 3 churches and a Jewish student center at UF. I cannot blame you if you don’t want to go to that link, so the schedule of their picketing expedition is as follows” Noon to 12:30PM at Trinity United Methodist Church, and 1-1:30 at the Hillel Center at 2020 W. University Ave. Then they skedaddle over to Queen of Peace Catholic Church at 10900 SW 24th Ave from 5-5:30, and finish out their “Reign of Error” at Saint Augustine Catholic Church at 1738 W. University Ave from 7-7:30.

Now you might ask, “Don, why are you so put out with Westboro Baptist Church?” It’s because they ruin God and Jesus for so many people. These ignoramuses go traveling around the country as if they are some sort of prophets setting the rest of the church straight by showing how mad we are supposed to be at the rest of the world. They rub salt in the wounds of the very people God has commanded us to heal and to whom we should show compassion. Then they rebuke everyone who is not like them. Is this really the Great Commission Christ gave to the church? Is this the example set by Jesus? Of course not.

So how should we respond to these modern day Pharisees? In the New Testament, those were the very people for whom He reserved His harshest criticism. Likewise, these frauds deserve our strongest condemnation. They do not belong to the Kingdom of God at all. They are (wait for it) of the Devil.

I know that it is a popular feeling that they should be ignored by the mainstream church. I believe this is a mistake. I believe this is the time to stand up and be counted. If the church is serious about reaching people in the LGBT community, then they need to stand with them and show them the love.

I am not saying you have to sell out all your beliefs. After all, many Christians disagree about major issues of eternal consequences, but DON’T hate each other! In fact, you are good neighbors and look out for one another. That’s all I’m saying: be a good neighbor and stand up with them against these clowns that you KNOW are dead wrong. And you know they are.

So, look at that schedule. I challenge you to come out and protest them at one of these locations, or more.

4 thoughts on “The REAL Haters will be here this weekend”

  1. I accept the challenge. My initial thought when I heard they were coming was that Praise in the Fields should be a 2 day event, and just move from Trinity to Hillel to Queen of Peace to St. Augustine’s, and we could all sing a couple of simple but profound songs-like “Amazing Grace” and “They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love,” at top volume until Westboro finally moved on to their next destination.
    Then came the call to rally at the downtown plaza, and ignore Westboro tomorrow. After talking to you today, and reading your blog, I wish there had been more time (after a busy couple of months!) to organize a rally of believers and military families. (As the mom of a Marine, I have another reason, in addition to yours, to find the Westboro group’s activities absolutely repugnant.) We should stand up for the the teachings of Christ, the Gospel, which is being defamed by the Phelps Family Pharisees, and for everyone that they throwing stones at.
    I will recycle a few campaign signs for a good cause: )

  2. I’ve been looking at pictures of the WBC counter-protests. You might not want to bring your young children to this. Some of the signs enter new frontiers of vulgarity.

  3. Well, they are thankfully gone now. But I think it’s important to point out that when Jesus criticized the pharisees and saducceese, those guys were in the majority and had a lot of religious and political authority. These Westboro folks are just a handful of deranged sociopathic lunatics. Best ignored, I think. We can’t go around spending valuable time and energy countering every small group full of crazies just because they get some professionally made signs. I dunno, seems like raising a counter-protest was probably their true goal all along, and they met it. You represented well, though, and with a heart in the right place.

  4. Actually, the Pharisees were part of the masses who were under the Romans. They were not a majority. But they wielded and abused spiritual authority, like the corrupt pastors at Dove and Westboro. They need desperately to be rebuked, publicly, and disowned by churches everywhere. Otherwise, our silence can be taken as tacit approval.

    For years my fellow Christians have tried to persuade me that doing nothing is the best course of action. And it hardly matters what the issue was. For too long I went along with them. I cannot bind my conscience any longer for their sake.

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