The Hardest Road

The Witchfinder reacts positively to news that Megan Phelps-Roper has left vile hate group Westboro Baptist Church.

The Witchfinder, contrary to obvious expectations, rarely comments on matters of religious doctrine, considering others to be far better qualified. Nevertheless I feel comfortable explaining to the reader the heresies associated with the so-called Westboro Baptist Church (WBC).

For those unfamiliar with this obnoxious religious group, WBC is a so-called church led by Pastor Fred Waldron Phelps that believes, in essence, that everyone in America will burn in hell because of the nation’s tolerance of homosexuality and fornication. It expresses its subtle and understated message using the slogan ‘God Hates Fags’ through its website of the same name. The group has gained controversy for its less-than-charming habit of picketing funerals – including the funerals of US Soldiers who died in service – explaining to all and sundry their view that –

  1. The dead person is burning in hell
  2. The death is part of God’s judgement on America

Unsurprisingly, this has led to controversy as well has violent attacks on the group by enraged members of bereaved military families. Within Christianity there are essentially two views on WBC. There is Fred Phelps’s view that the activities of his church are in accordance with Biblical teaching and on the other hand there is every other strand of the Christian faith for the last 2,000 years.

Most Christian groups are against sex outside marriage to some degree but not one, not in the history of the faith, has ever preached in favour of picketing military funerals even in the darkest days of the medieval inquisition. WBC has been disowned by the Baptists internationally, condemned by leftist Michael Moore, sued by grieving families (rightwing news host Bill O’Reilly paid the legal fees of a family whose soldier son’s funeral was protested by WBC) and targeted for destruction by the Activist Group Anonymous. In short, no one likes WBC.

The group has remained in the public eye through its controversial tactics and more recently through a series of parody videos in which popular songs are reworded. Classics include ‘Santa Claus Will Take You to Hell’, and ‘No Poker Face’. The videos were fronted by Megan Phelps-Roper, the charismatic granddaughter of Fred. Whilst the songs were abhorrent, Megan is an attractive and intelligent woman with a strong singing voice unaugmented by auto-tune. The Witchfinder always thought she was too good for WBC.


Megan Phelps protests … everyone

It came as a pleasant surprise then, when it was announced earlier this month that Megan had left Westboro Baptist Church, along with her sister Grace. In doing so she had turned her back on her family and the sinister cult that had consumed her life. Within days the family had disowned, announcing via its website that she would burn in hell in a press release entitled ‘Westboro Baptist Church Statement Regarding The Departure & Exclusion Of Non-Believers’.

For Megan leaving this blasphemous and heretical cult meant leaving the only family she had ever known to face an uncertain future. It is a testament to her courage, her spirit and also, perhaps to genuine divine inspiration. The Witchfinder applauds Megan and hopes that she finds her way to a genuine Christian faith, and perhaps, a career in the music industry for which she is eminently suited.

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