A gay rights speech video delivered by Reverend Phil Snider has gone viral and reached over 2.3 million views as of today (October 22). The Pastor of Brentwood Christian Church in Missouri began his August speech with an anti-gay approach and added a surprising twist at the end that revealed his stance in support of gay rights.
Snider had taken text from speeches in the 1950s and 1960s from preachers who supported segregation and were against equal rights for all races. The text was used in the current situation regarding gay rights to help his congregation to compare the arguments used decades ago to the same arguments made now towards the LGBT community.
Huffington Post reported that Snider was "caught by surprise" by the overwhelming response he has received by thousands of people. People responded with both support and disappointment towards Snider.
"This is a brave young man, in the middle of a very conservative "Baptist" portion of our country, advocating civil rights for all. I suspect he will pay a heavy price for these words, and I thank him for his courage," expressed LoveSlave.
"He did very much sound like a modern anti-gay preacher until the end. Certainly had me fooled. Apparently I'm also guilty of "being too quick too judge others," wrote Kristine.
"Pastor Snider, I'm sad to hear your speech. I love people, but I don't love all decisions people make. If I disagree with something, does that mean I'm not loving? Do I have to believe the same thing to be loving? Not all Christians impose forcefully the Gospel and the Gospel is love. My church lovingly approaches people to share the Gospel but we never force anyone."
Pastor Snider wrote on his blog to thank the people for their support and to address those who did not support his stance.
"As you can imagine, all of this has caught me off-guard. But please know how much I continue to appreciate all of your kind words of affirmation and support. I continue to try to keep up with as many responses and requests as I can, and I greatly appreciate your patience. I promise to try to get to as many as I possibly can...
"The last few hours have been a bit of a whirlwind for me, to say the least. I’m really heartened by all of the emails, Facebook messages, and kind words that I’ve received over the last 24 hours. As I read each one, I don’t see them simply as messages that seek to affirm a particular talk I gave on a particular night in Springfield, MO (as grateful as I am for such affirmations), but rather, I view them as a reflection of the thousands — indeed, the millions — of people who, on a daily basis, are journeying together because we believe that our world can be a better place, a fairer place, a more beautiful place — for all people and not just for some — and we won’t stop calling for a more beautiful world to be born. I’m also grateful for all of the people who have come before us — many whose names history won’t recall — who have allowed us to be where we are now, on whose shoulders we stand. These folks may not be famous — more times than not they are friends or family members who have bravely told their story, often in the face of major consequences. They are the ones who have brought us to this place, and we carry their stories with us as we try to build a a more just world."
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