Fred Phelps Sr. founded the infamous Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas. The only mantra of Phelps or the church appears to be “God Hates Fags.” This afternoon word came out that Phelps is dying at Midland Care Hospice in Topeka. Our church is unanimously made up of people that Phelps would call fags.
In a very emotional moment for our congregation this evening, we prayed.
“God of all comfort. Join us at this hour. We come to you with broken hearts at the many things that Fred Phelps Sr. has said and done to the detriment of countless people. We come to you in our brokenness with a belief that you heal the broken places with your love. You have called us to love even the vilest of people. So tonight we pray for your child and our brother Fred Phelps Sr.. We ask that you take all the pain out of his body. We ask that you be present with Fred and that he know your love. We pray that even at this moment may Fred also know our love for him and all the others who have abused and treated us like shit. We love our brother Fred and we pray for his wellness in this life and in the next. Amen.”
When we completed our time of prayer, there were a few tears in the room. It was as if God had reconciled many of us to someone we thought we never would be reconciled to. There was also a sense that Phelps represents so many of those who have spiritually abused us in the past. I don’t know if Fred Phelps Sr. will die tonight…but I do know that whenever he does he will be taking the love of our people with him.