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I live in the Waycroft-Woodlawn neighborhood of Arlington VA.  My house is on N. 16th St, 2 blocks west of Glebe Road.  On the Southeast corner of the intersection of Glebe and N. 16th St. is the Mount Olivet United Methodist Church.  The Church has been on that site since before the Civil War, as you can read in its history.  It sponsors AA meetings, provides food for the needy, its Boy Scout troop sells Christmas trees.  I have served on the Board of our local community center, and in general they have been cooperative, with no more than the normal rough edges between a church many of whose members are from outside our community and the immediate neighborhood.

We cannot blame them for what happened this morning.

Today hate came to Arlington.

Today the Church was picketed - by the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka KS.

Yes those people.

The ones whose website reads

Please keep reading.

We are a diverse neighborhood.  Leaves and I have lived in our house since the late spring of 1984.  There are people in our neighborhood who have been here longer than we have.  The house immediately to our west is occupied by someone around my age who grew up in it.  He lived about a block away until his widowed father remarried and moved in with his new wife.  At that time he and his wife bought the house, refurbished and expanded it and moved in.

We have Halloween parades, and Fourth of July Picnics in the nearby park.  Often our community association meets in the nearby Hospice.  Arlington Hospital is another two blocks west, on George Mason Drive.

Most people in our community vote Democratic, but one of our most active community members is a retired Naval Aviator who is an outspoken Republican.  When it comes to the neighborhood, we manage to get along despite some differences.

So why was our neighborhood targeted?  Why was Mount Olivet on the target list for Fred Phelps and his crew?

Allow me to quote from their website, from the schedule which include a number of churches where the Westboro folks are demonstrating.

I will not reproduce the screaming red oversized letters, but simply let the text speak for itself:

Mount Olivet United Methodist Church in Arlington, VA    January 20, 2013  8:00 AM - 8:30 AM

The United Methodist "church" isn't a church. They are a whorehouse. They take your money to make you feel good.

Mount Olivet sits in the shadow of Washington and they don't speak to the sin of this nation. How can they when they don't obey God's word?

Two of the "pastors" are women! There's no scripture for multiple pastors and there is certainly no scripture for female pastors: 1Ti 2:In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; 10 But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. 11 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. 12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. 13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. 15 Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.


You pretend that you obey because you won't marry fags in your "church". They can be members in good standing, but they can't marry. Shame on you!

Ro 6:13  Neither yield ye your members as instruments of
unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as
those that are alive from the dead, and your members as
instruments of righteousness unto God.
2Co 6:14  Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

We have an active community list serv.  As soon as the Westboro folks showed up the word went out.  For a brief while they were an annoyance and then they were gone.

THe church and the neighborhood basically ignored them.

We did not allow their presence to disrupt a beautiful winter Sunday morning.

But now we have have seen hate up close.

It is not pretty.

And regardless of how they may describe themselves, they certainly do not represent the Jesus of the New Testament.

Hate came to Arlington.

Hate demonstrated first at this church, and then at another Arlington Church.

Then the hate-bearers left.

They are still consumed with their hate.

They are hate-filled.

They are to be pitied.

And our lives go on.


Originally posted to teacherken on Sun Jan 20, 2013 at 11:57 AM PST.

Also republished by Angry Gays, Milk Men And Women, LGBT Kos Community, Street Prophets , and Virginia Kos.

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