Make America Straight Again pastor says if he dies of coronavirus from going to church it will be ‘worth it’
A homophobic pastor set to speak at the Make America Straight Again has said that if he dies from coronavirus because he insists on continuing to go to church, it will be “worth it”.
The first Make America Straight Again conference was held last year, when it was horrifically timed to coincide with the third anniversary of the Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting, and it was recently announced that conference would be returning in 2020.
The free three-day event brings together some of America’s most anti-gay, anti-LGBT+ and generally bigoted evangelical pastors, and this year will be organised by hate preacher Steven Anderson.
Pastor Patrick Boyle of Revival Baptist Church in Florida played a large part in last year’s conference, and will be back this year.
Last year, he said of the conference: “They are beyond reach, the Sodomites. We are not trying to reach them. We are trying to warn society that if we embrace that, you are going to lose your children … The schools are telling them it’s an alternative lifestyle choice.”
Boyle, who has recently claimed that AIDS is God’s punishment for homosexuality and that trans people are “disease-ridden” and live 20 to 30 years less than cisgender people, has now said it will be “worth it” if he dies of coronavirus.
The homophobic pastor has been keeping his church open during the coronavirus pandemic, as Florida governor Ron DeSantis recently classified religious services as “essential business”.
In a sermon this week, he told his congregation: “Hey, we’re not spreading the virus. We’re spreading the word of God. I mean, that’s what’s gonna save souls.
“And if people are really dying out there wouldn’t they need this more? Wouldn’t they need someone who’s not fearful to wipe away the fear and walk out by faith and spread the word of God, wouldn’t they need that?”
But, he added if they died because they continued to church, then they would be martyrs.
“You know, when you get to heaven, what you’re going to hear is well done. Well done good and faithful, sir.
“Because the Bible tells you for a martyr, there’s not a reproach in heaven. There’s a crown in heaven. That tells me that dying for God is probably one of the most noble things that you could do.
“You might die of the coronavirus, then there’s a crown in heaven waiting for me… If I’m on my deathbed, and by the way, I don’t think it’s gonna happen over it’s way overhyped. But if I died of the coronavirus, you know what my last words would be? ‘It’s worth it.’
“There’s not a thing I’d change. Why? Because the victory ultimately comes from the Lord.”