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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

God is Hate?

The Westboro Baptist Church and its place in the seething melting pot that is America has been of interest to me since I first became aware of its existence. I admit that I never passed that curious-child phase of asking "Why?" to everything I don't understand, and this was one of those things I really didn't understand.

The WBC, for those who don't know, is the small Topeka, Kansas-based "Old School (or Primitive) Baptist Church" probably best known of late for picketing military funerals. I'll explain in more detail in a later post (but need to pack and ride from Parkville, MO, to Salem, AR, today, so this needs to be brief).

The pickets were part of a thread recently on a (loosely) miltary-themed page I follow, and another of the followers, who had already offered me a roof and pillow while in the Kansas City neighborhood, mentioned the church's proximity to where I would be. On checking that services were open to the public, I decided to attend one, wanting to get a feel for the members, and then to try and speak with them.  

On Sunday, my host drove me to Topeka, where we encountered a locked door at the church, and no response to the doorbell or intercom. We returned to Missouri, I e-mailed the WBC contact and had a response later that evening that included the following:
We are so sorry that
you were unable to attend today's meeting. We welcome anyone to come, but
the doors were locked just prior to the service, as we have had some
mischief-makers right outside the church doors as of late, and we will
suffer no disruption to our sincere worship of God. So again, sorry. If you
are still in the area, we would be happy to meet with you or talk to you by
phone. You are welcome to come back from Kansas City and meet with any of us
who are available.
In a decision that has already upset at least one person I know, I took the WBC up on their offer and yesterday, the 4th of July, rode to Topeka and spent an hour-plus with Fred Phelps Jr., the eldest son of Westboro Baptist Church founder and pastor Fred Phelps, and another son, Jon. I recorded our conversation, with their permission, but need some time to listen, transcribe, consider and e-mail further questions (to them and others) before being  ready to write about that. I'll do a backgrounder on both WBC and the PGR before that.

For today, I need to ride.

2 comments:

  1. Humble opinion based on Proverbs 6:16...
    God is not HATE, but God DOES HATE. God, being Love and Truth, hates EVIL. Proverbs 6;16 states 6 things in man which God hates,and goes on to say that actually 7 things disgust Him.
    1. A proud look, haughty eyes (Arrogance)
    2. A lying tongue
    3. Hands that shed INNOCENT blood
    4. A heart that devises wicked plans
    5. Feet that run swiftly to EVIL
    6. A FALSE WITNESS, uttering lies
    7. One who intentionally stirs up trouble and dissension among
    brothers

    ReplyDelete
  2. wOW I read Specs blog and whoever is behind "Spec" is an amazing talent- Hope you're working as a professional writer somehow- You are gifted

    ReplyDelete