“We invite the Savannah community, its institutions, organizations, families, and friends to join us for this festival of love. Let’s show WBC that their words of negativity can not affect our beautiful city and community through words and actions of love and tolerance,” states the Facebook invitation for the vigil.
Another Facebook page also asks people to hold counter protests of WBC during its several stops in Savannah. “Spread the love not the hate — this must stop. We can’t let where we live be associated with the hatred of the Westboro Baptist Church,” the page states.
Westboro Baptist Church, famous for its “God Hates Fags” mantra and protesting military funerals, posted to its website on April 28 its plans to protest First Baptist Church from 10:30-11 a.m. on May 22. WBC, led by Fred Phelps, also plans to protest other Savannah churches on May 22, including Savannah Christian Church, St. John the Baptist Church and St. John’s Episcopal Church.
Westboro will hold its protest at Savannah Christian Church also from 10:30-11 a.m., according to its website. Westboro condemns SCC, saying, “The Lord your God has sent you a strong delusion that you would believe the lies that your so-called preachers tell you. You lap up the fables of God loves everyone and it’s ok to be gay because you have no standing to dispute them. They make you feel good and allow you to think that your sins are by far better than the next guy so no reason to put them away and obey.”
Westboro plans to return to Savannah on Friday, May 27, to protest local high schools, including Beach High School, Jenkins High School and Windsor Forest High School.
“We will picket these fag-infested pervert-run Savannah, GA high schools,” WBC states on its website, www.godhatesfags.com.