The Westboro Baptist Church is heading to Spokane on Thursday to picket the area surrounding Gonzaga’s campus. 

The group is scheduled to protest between 11:45 a.m. and 12:15 p.m., according to its website.

President Thayne McCulloh addressed the community via email stating that WBC will not be allowed to picket or demonstrate at the university. 

The group is known for its inflammatory messages toward the LGBTQ+ community, military personal and college students.

WBC members have focused much of their attacks on the LGBTQ+ community and will be visiting Spokane on National Coming Out Day.

While visiting Spokane they intend to picket the Spokane Convention Center as well as Lewis and Clark High School.

The news release published on the WBC’s website said the visit to Spokane is to enlighten the educational institutions on how they are failing in the most fundamental way — by not teaching students to fear the Lord.

“Instead of teaching the children to fear the Lord, the educational institutions force feed a steady diet of pride, contention, self-importance, and lasciviousness,” the release said.

McCulloh said it’s the community’s responsibility as a Jesuit, Catholic and humanistic university to respond to incidents of hatred and fear and decisively counteract them.

“Those of us in Jesuit institutions are called by the Church to serve as beacons of light and hope for all people,” McCulloh said. “Particularly those who are frequently marginalized and victimized by society.”

McCulloh added the GU community can respond to the WBC by taking part in the justice-oriented events planned this week. 

On Thursday, McCulloh invited the community to wear GU apparel and for those not in class to gather for an Interfaith Vigil for Peace at the Peace Poll on the lawn immediately south of College Hall.

McCulloh asked counter protesters to do so in a non-violent and legal manner, as any violation of the law will likely result in civil lawsuits as well as criminal charges.

“Members of our community are urged to thoughtfully consider the power they surrender by playing into the carefully crafted agenda of this group, which gains influence primarily through the attention given to it,” McCulloh said. “We invite individuals, external to the University but interested in taking a contra-position to the WBC, to consider the same approach.”

Recommended for you

(3) comments

netratabil

We mourn those callously slaughtered in Las Vegas and pray for the wounded. But our prayers must be followed by action, long overdue limits to the easy access to fire arms. Common sense measures at churches willis tx, like restricting the use of silencers that make a shooter harder to locate and stop, must prevail. Yet we know that instead, Congress is planning to vote on the SHARE Act, which, among other misguided provisions, allows purchasers of silencers on the internet or at gun shows to forgo a background check. This bill must not be allowed to become law.

multumesc

The church has not yet begun the process of submitting the required permits for such a protest, Cassandra Anne Lafser, press secretary to Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, said in an email Thursday night. That thing that happened in Orlando, it was a very tragic thing and it’s a very sorrowful thing, but one of the aspects of the sorrow that people are missing in their kind of worldly, maudlin sentimentality is that all of those people in that whole building dome repair north royalton business were doing God's work.

multumesc

Pastor Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Church followers will protest Elizabeth Ewards' funeral due to her lack of faith in God, and her practice of using her money to create what God took away. Elizabeth Edwards, after losing her 16-year-old son in a vehicle crash, set out on spending thousands of dollars to have more children. After a six-year battle with breast cancer, she died days ago. They hate anyone not affiliated with their church, but they especially hate homosexuals, AIDS victims and Iraq War veterans. Many well-established and well-respected organizations with good church financial software, such as the Anti-Defamation League and Southern Poverty Law Centre, have classified Westboro Baptist Church as a hate group and dangerous cult.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.