The Westboro Baptist Church has denied reports that they had excommunicated their founder Fred Phelps, whose death was announced earlier today.

The ‘God Hates Fags’ church took to their blog to deny an allegation from the pastor’s estranged son Nathan that Phelps Sr was excommunicated last August, after power struggles within the church.

They wrote: “Listen carefully; there are no power struggles in the Westboro Baptist Church, and there is no human intercessor – we serve no man, and no hierarchy, only the Lord Jesus Christ. No red shoes, no goofy hat, and no white smoke for us; thank you very much.”

“Remember that the Lord Jesus Christ warned us that a man’s foes will be they of his own household: So again, there is nothing surprising about these shenanigans, spurred on by faithless, ax-grinding, God-hating deserters of the cross, and it amounts to nothing but vain, empty, hope.”

Speaking of the death of Phelps Sr, the church’s most prominent member, they said he “preached a plain faithful doctrine to an ever darkening world”, but said “[God] will dispose of each of us at his pleasure”.

In the long blog post, the church also condemned the media’s “unprecedented, hypocritical, vitriolic explosion of words” over the coverage of Phelps’ demise.