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May 22nd, 2012
11:23 AM ET

Video of North Carolina pastor's plan to 'get rid of' gays goes viral

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - Video of a North Carolina pastor preaching that gays and lesbians should be rounded up inside an electric fence is going viral on the Internet, two weeks after North Carolina passed a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and President Barack Obama voiced personal support for legalizing such marriages.

"I figured a way out, a way to get rid of all the lesbians and queers, but I couldn't get it past the Congress," Pastor Charles L. Worley can be seen telling his Providence Road Baptist Church congregation in the video, which had more than 250,000 YouTube views by Tuesday.

"Build a great big, large fence - 50 or a 100 miles long - and put all the lesbians in there,” Worley went on to say in his May 13 sermon at his Maiden, North Carolina, church. “Fly over and drop some food. Do the same thing with the queers and the homosexuals, and have that fence electrified so they can't get out. Feed them. And you know in a few years, they'll die out. You know why? They can't reproduce."

My Take: The Bible condemns a lot, but here's why we focus on homosexuality

The video had initially been posted on Providence Road’s website but was recently taken down, according to CNN affiliate WBTV-TV in Charlotte.

The phone line at Worley’s church was busy on Monday night and on Tuesday, as was Worley’s home number on Tuesday.

The church’s website was down Tuesday morning, but it had described the house of worship as fundamentalist, meaning it represents a Baptist tradition that's more conservative than the Southern Baptists.

My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage

Worley’s sermon was posted on YouTube by a group called Catawba Valley Citizens Against Hate, which is organizing a protest at the Providence Road Baptist Church on Sunday.

Addressing his congregation last Sunday, Worley referred to his earlier controversial sermon.

"I talked a little bit, I believe it was last Sunday, on the homosexual lifestyle, and there was a whole lot of people who didn't like what I said," Worley told his congregation Sunday, according to WBTV. "I want to read it out of the Bible, and then we'll go from there."

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“Listen, all of the Sodomites, the lesbians, and all of the ... what's that word? Gays - I didn't wanna say 'queers' - that say we don't love you, I love you more than you love yourself,” Worley said, according to WBTV. “I'm praying for you to be saved."

Worley’s initial sermon was partly framed as a response to Obama’s endorsement of same-sex marriage, which he made in a TV interview a day after North Carolina voters passed a state constitutional amendment banning legal recognition of such marriages and other types of gay unions.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, or GLAAD, was working Tuesday to gather criticism of Worley’s comments from other North Carolina pastors.

“I am angry and sick at heart over Pastor Worley's comments,” said the Rev. Dennis Teall-Fleming, pastor at Open Hearts Gathering in Gastonia, North Carolina, in a statement distributed by GLAAD.

“Nothing he says has anything to do with the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” said Teall-Fleming, who leads a Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) congregation. “I call on all Christian and Baptist organizations that have any connection with him to condemn his comments as strongly as I do, including Providence Road Baptist Church of Maiden.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Homosexuality • North Carolina

soundoff (5,806 Responses)
  1. Justin

    As a North Carolinian, I'm utterly embarrassed by this piece of human trash. I'm not only embarrassed by his views, I'm embarrassed at his lack of a fundamental understanding of the English language. I only hope the rest of the nation doesn't believe all southerners are this unbelievably immoral, myopic and stupid.

    May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Nicholas in Toronto

      I hope you are right, but after listening to his sermon, new interviews with hissupportive congregants and listening to a previous sermon where he yearned for the good old days when you could just hang gay people from a big white oak tree, and of course the recent vote in NC, I would be hesitant to visit NC let alone open a branch plant there. I will advice my board to look elsewhere to establish a new business. operation in the US.

      May 22, 2012 at 9:21 pm |
  2. Jon

    Here's the thing:

    This guy is a religious guy. He is a preacher. And his religion dictates that being gay is a sin. In this country he is allowed to practice his religion and preach anything he likes.

    The PROBLEM is that there are still people out there who listen to things like this and actually think he has the right idea. There will always be people on the fringe, who believe ridiculous things. It is up to the public to shut them out, shut religious dogma out, and live like NORMAL human beings.

    May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • jacy tx

      Yeah sure, the point is not whether he has the right to say this or that, of course he can say whatever. The point is that most of us are outraged at the fact that he is a pastor, and he thinks the way he does. And his congregation is actually agreeing with him. Freedom of speech doesn't protect you against the consequences of what you say. Just because you are free to speak your mind, it doesn't mean that people are not going to be angry at you or offended at what you said. It doesn't mean that people are supposed to take what you said quietly and shut up. If he has the guts to say this, then he should be man enough to put up with the consequences of it.. of offending and insulting people, and misrepresenting a religion, and getting true Christians angry at him for making a fool out of the faith.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:19 pm |
  3. Trey

    How about CNN report on Obama's preacher, Reverend Wright.

    May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • jacy tx

      yeah that was horrible too..what is your point? the problem is not cnn or whomever is reporting it, it is the preacher. Both Wright and this guy should be ashamed of themselves...

      May 22, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • Tulsa77

      Umm, there were several reports on it four years ago. You should have been paying attention then. News sites don't replay your favorite stories years after the fact when none of the facts have changed.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • skpfrmdc

      Why? Is he any different from this guy? Hate is hate and if you agree well, 2+2 = 4.

      May 22, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • sassysticks53

      Trey, please dig in the CNN Archives back to 2008. You can find all the reporting on Rev. Wright that you're looking for. Right now the subject is this racist pastor Worley.

      May 22, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  4. TheZel

    Seriously??? What's the difference between this and what Hitler said about the Jews. Time to wake General Sherman up from the grave and teach this southern "gent" a lesson.

    May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Sodomite

      You mean General Sherman, who routinely and willingly murdered helpless civilians? A man whose 'scorched earth' policies inspired future despots. I think he's too busy burning in hell right now.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
    • TheZel

      those racist pigs that treated Blacks like animals got what they deserved. Fire from Hell.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
  5. yoyo martinez

    My former Pastor lived a double life.

    May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
  6. alex

    Hey you stupid, dumb butt. These children have parents. Somebody needs to lock you up with a few gang members.

    May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
  7. vrsatile1

    Justin you are just down right ignorant!

    May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • jacy tx

      Why is he ignorant?? did you read his comment?? He is expressing the feelings of many people, myself included

      May 22, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
    • skpfrmdc

      well then jace, drink plenty of ice water before you expire. your "Christian" values are reprehensible!

      May 22, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
  8. Big Jilm

    This guy's first plan was to move all teh gays to Madagascar, but he's settled on genocide since a fence would be a lot cheaper. Such morality, compassion, and love in an overflowing cup of goodness -while locking people up in a fence.

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • jer

      he should kill all of the straight parents while he is at it, hell they are the ones making gay babies

      May 22, 2012 at 12:09 pm |
  9. Too Much

    Its hard to be surprised at anything these days with all of the outlandish comments that are made by extremists of every kind but this video made me furious and sick at the same time. There is no way I would continue attending a church that preached that absolute hatred. North Carolina has taken a huge black eye lately, but this one tops them all. If this doesn't remind people of Hitler, nothing will.

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  10. MDMinton

    What a great idea!!!! Why haven't we thought of something like this before!!! Wait, what? Who did? The Nazis/Hitler?!! You don't say!!! Jeez, I'm a little confused, if I'm remebering my history, I thought those guys were evil monstors that plunged the World into a hellish time of death and destruction all so they could eliminate the lesser races through mass murder and subjegation!!! Dam Liberal Text Books, always misleading the good people of the earth, my history teacher never told me once that Hitler and crew were just good Christians expounded the word of God and doing his will here on earth!!!!

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  11. Truefax

    Romeny supporters == Bigots and Sheeple and the Greedy Rich

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • Truefax

      Specifically the Greedy Rich, as you can be Rich and willing to pay your fair share.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • bpa

      You are a moron, and the only sheep I see here is you.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
  12. jacy tx

    This is the kind of thing (pastors like this, people like this) who made me ashamed of being American... Can you imagine Jesus saying these things? The Lord would have never done this...He was accepting and loving to ALL OF US....

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  13. Mike

    I don't know building that fence sounds EXPENSIVE. I know how the conservatives hate deficits so this won't work. OH wait, you're willing to deficit spend if it means getting rid of gays. OK then by all means carry on

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  14. Aubrey

    Way to stand on the Word!

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  15. BobbyGB

    Blah Blah Blah CNN. Another how Christians are bad article on the front page headline. I'm not a Christian, but this is just getting old.

    May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • Too Much

      Can you blame them for running this story? This "church" should have zero members in it today. Have some morals people!

      May 22, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
    • BobbyGB

      I agree. Very hypocritical of the faith preached. But CNN has been running similar lead articles for days now and it is getting old. I don't subscribe to the F news network, but I am wondering why CNN is making such a huge attack on Christianity when there are more important things. Why not show examples of intelligent and productive gays? That would do more to persuade people that posting ridiculous inflammatory speakers hell-bent on polarization. But maybe I'm asking too much...I usually do.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
    • Sodomite

      Yeah, Bobby, but if it were another 'Muslims are evil' article, you'd be lapping it up.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:09 pm |
    • jb

      you are right it is getting old, I am tired of hearing the hate. stop hating on my lifestyle.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:12 pm |
    • BobbyGB

      Not in the slightest! I understand the actions of the few do not reflect the beliefs of the many. I know several Muslims and I have yet to personally meet an "evil" Muslim. So no, sorry, I'm lapping up those articles either. They too are polarizing and inflammatory, and do not belong in respectable journalism.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
  16. Steff

    Ironically, there must be a place in hell for a preacher like this. He really is misguided and a sinner.

    May 22, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • Peacemaker

      Sadly, yes. This man is hateful!

      May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  17. Peacemaker

    What part does ...... 'LOVE ONE ANOTHER AS I HAVE LOVED YOU......." DO CHRISTIANS NOT GET?

    It is not up to us to judge, as Jesus said "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone." Anyone out there without sin?

    And what's even more disturbing is that these are the same people, so-called Christians who believed that biracial marriage was an abomination! And they also ranted against school desegregation! And they were against .....Civil Rights!

    Why is it that these so-called-Christian are always on the side of hate?

    May 22, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • valleylily50

      I am a Christian and I take the statement to not judge very much to heart. Your statement judges all Christians. There are people of every religion that are intolerant and judgmental. This man happens to be Christian and unfortunately a minister. However, you cannot judge me and other Christians based on his bias and extremism.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:10 pm |
  18. jason

    bigoted piece of trash red neck. that is all. anyone who believes that garbage isnt worth the dog sh!t i stepped in earlier.

    May 22, 2012 at 11:58 am |
  19. pat

    The pastor shows great effort to appear stright.

    May 22, 2012 at 11:58 am |
  20. 77777

    The guy has obviously not actually read the Bible. Jesus was very clear that He came to save everyone from their sin; He didn't differentiate between sins. He was most critical of the people who thought well of themselves and had no sympathy with others.

    “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
    3 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4 How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye."

    9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

    13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
    14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

    May 22, 2012 at 11:58 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.