June 4th, 2012
05:43 PM ET

We don't teach hate, says church where anti-homosexual song filmed

By Ismael Estrada, CNN

Greensburg, Indiana (CNN) - About 20 protesters gathered on Sunday outside the Apostolic Truth Tabernacle here to voice opposition to a viral online video that was taped in the church and shows a young child singing song with lyrics that offer a harsh message for homosexuals.

The video, which surfaced on YouTube last week, shows a child in front of the congregation, singing "I know that God is right, and somebody's wrong... ain't no homo going to make it to heaven."

The congregation erupts in applause at those lines, which the unidentified boy repeats as the pastor looks on.

At another point in the video a voice is heard shouting,"That’s my boy."

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In the first Sunday service since the video surfaced, congregants arrived to the church as protesters jeered them over the video.

A church leader, who would not give his name, told CNN that journalists were not allowed inside the church and declined to offer anyone from church leadership to comment on the video.

The leader said that he needed to be cautious about letting outsiders into the church because it had received threats over the video and asked CNN to leave the premises.

Church videos with harsh words for gays go viral online

The local sheriff's office said the church had not reported any verifiable threats.

No one answered the door at the home of Jeff Sangl, the church's pastor.

The video of the singing boy was the latest in a string of viral anti-gay videos that have surfaced from independent churches.  Those videos have been resoundingly condemned by religious leaders, even by conservatives who believe homosexual sex is a sin.

The Apostolic Truth Tabernacle posted a statement on its website that says in part: "The Pastor and members of Apostolic Truth Tabernacle do not condone, teach, or practice hate of any person for any reason.”

The pastor's son, Josh Sangl, told CNN his father was away on vacation and that there was much more to the video than we were being told, though he wouldn’t elaborate.

The majority of the church members wouldn’t comment about the controversy or respond to questions about the parents of the young boy.

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"I think it's blown out of proportion, you know," said Robert Kirby, who is not a church member but was attending Sunday's church service in support of his daughter, who teaches Sunday School there. "They love everybody.

"They don't love sin though," he said. "It's all in the Bible."

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Church • Homosexuality

soundoff (3,151 Responses)
  1. Ian

    The bigots realize they're losing, just like they lost on civil rights and women's suffrage, and they're terrified.

    June 5, 2012 at 4:20 am |
  2. Bootyfunk

    this kind of religious ignorance is like a commercial for atheism. lol.

    June 5, 2012 at 4:11 am |
  3. James

    We don't teach hate, we just preach it.

    June 5, 2012 at 4:09 am |
    • jross

      And applaud it,.. loudly and with laughter... while in church...

      June 6, 2012 at 3:20 am |
  4. josh rogen

    this notion that the government has the right to control what people eat, smoke, drink, or think is scary. true diversity comes from allowing everyone to be who they are, and to voice and debate and argue their beliefs openly. government sponsored labels, and stereotypes, are more destructive then any group's voicing of their view. those who think it's okay to support the rights of some by restricting the rights of others are even more scary. and when those people occupy positions of political and economic power as they do now, it may well spell the end of individual rights in the US.

    June 5, 2012 at 4:08 am |
    • David Myers

      "Individual right"! You mean the right to ridicule and preach hate for other "individuals" (gays or lesbians)? It is the "false-christian" actions that are diminishing the eqaul rights of others, not the other way around!

      June 5, 2012 at 4:34 am |
    • Steven Capsuto

      Whose rights do you think the government is violating? Government has nothing to do with it. No one has been arrested for engaging in free speech. No one has been a target of prior restraint of speech. You seem to be under the mistaken belief that free speech means a person's opinions cannot be criticized by others.

      June 5, 2012 at 6:35 am |
  5. Alvin

    It's sad anything true is considered Bullying or hate. I guess Jesus should have Just stayed quite, because the same foolish people falling for the same tricks. God wrote the truth in the beginning in the book of Genesis.

    June 5, 2012 at 4:06 am |
    • Mirosal

      No, he didn't. The order of "creation" is wrong. How can you have flora and fauna flourish, before the sun was created? And please explain how a WORLD-WIDE (yes it says the world) flood is possible. Where would the waters recede? And just HOW can you make a viable species from TWO? When cain killed Abel, and was banished, "god" marked him so others would know. What others? According to your own book, it was just the 4 of them. Where did Cain meet his wife? Where were the others? These are simple questions of logic. Or, is that too much for you to comprehend? So much for your "truth", huh?

      June 5, 2012 at 4:17 am |
    • Chase

      Genesis was written by MEN who had no scientific understanding about the universe around them.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:18 am |
    • Bootyfunk

      don't you know christians hate facts?

      June 5, 2012 at 4:19 am |
    • Mirosal

      I asked these questions when I was in grade school. The nuns were sure MAD at me!!! lol

      June 5, 2012 at 4:22 am |
    • Veritas

      The Genesis fairy tale is complete nonsense, as anyone who has an intellect above that of a 5-year old has realized long ago.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:42 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Alvin: What century is it? I'm asking because apparently you're not living in the same one Mirosal, Bootyfunk or I am.

      Mirosal: Come, our friend, we will protect you in our wonderful land of freedom, from these bubble dwellers.

      June 5, 2012 at 5:29 am |
    • Mirosal

      Can you get me a job there m'lady? And where would I stay? lol

      June 5, 2012 at 5:30 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Mirosal: Jobs are available and our house is two bedroom...just means I'd give up my computer room (my cave :-)). I'm just trying to save your sanity my friend.

      June 5, 2012 at 5:36 am |
    • sam stone

      i agree, alvin....just like when they taught that nigras are lesser than us white folk.

      June 5, 2012 at 5:43 am |
  6. Donkey Party

    Charmin' – Don't kid yourself. Violence is found in every religion, and the lengths to which its believers wish to protect their beliefs, or to project their beliefs upon others, determines the severity of their actions.

    June 5, 2012 at 4:01 am |
    • Charmin'

      we know the most violent one. sugar coating or deflecting doesn't help. Again, take your pill.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:24 am |
    • Selendis

      when religion and politics become all about choosing the "least evil", we are riding in the hand basket. not to hell, just to the dredges of humanity.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:49 am |
  7. Skeptic

    Adolf Hitler died in Germany but reincarnated all over the United States. A murderer usually started by killing animals. A gay hater will usually turn into something like Adolf Hitler.

    June 5, 2012 at 4:00 am |
  8. Jonathan Edwards

    God predestined some people to heaven and others to hell before the foundations of the Earth.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:52 am |
    • Mirosal

      then your "god" is petty, malicious and evil to start with, and not worth worshipping at all in the lwast.

      June 5, 2012 at 3:54 am |
    • Mirosal

      typo correction .. in the least

      June 5, 2012 at 3:54 am |
    • Jonathan Edwards

      But all humans are God-hating voluntarily, so God has done no injustice in sending people there.

      June 5, 2012 at 3:55 am |
    • jjoonnyy

      Your "god" died 2,000 yrs. ago...get over it......

      June 5, 2012 at 3:57 am |
    • Mirosal

      his "god" is no different than the thousands of other "gods" throughout history .. never existed, does not now, and never will.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:00 am |
    • jjoonnyy

      I totally agree....

      June 5, 2012 at 4:01 am |
    • Get Real

      Jonathan Edwards,

      Your "God" is the fantasy of primitive, superst'itious Middle Eastern Hebrews. There is not a shred of evidence that the stories of supernatural beings and events that they told are true.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:06 am |
    • Matt

      You contradict yourself, as evangelicals often do. You say your God predestined some people for Hell, yet you also say all humans are hating God voluntarily, so it's ok that God is sending them to hell for hating Him even though He predetermined they were going to Hell, so it doesn't matter if they hate Him or not, as they are already going to Hell. The Apostlecats.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:09 am |
    • Jonathan Edwards

      Hey Matt,

      God is totally sovereign, as in you penned everything that would happen on planet Earth before he ever created the Earth. But humans are responsible. You're right, it's a paradox. But one I hold to be true.

      It's just like when you read Harry Potter. There are two reasons Lord Voldemort is the bad guy. One reason is because he really is just that evil. The other is that JK Rowling wrote him out to be that way. That's the way it is between God and humans. Both assertions regarding responsibility are correct.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:14 am |
    • Jonathan Edwards

      "you" should be "he", sorry

      June 5, 2012 at 4:14 am |
    • Mirosal

      At least you got one thing correct. Harry Potter books and your buy-bull are total works of fiction.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:20 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Sounds like a spin on Pascals Wager...better believe because you are not sure if you are one of the chosen.
      I'll wager my bets on there not being a god and if there really is a hell, at least I know I'll be in the company of some truly amazing people and not sitting around with a group of haters and bigots.

      June 5, 2012 at 5:32 am |
  9. a phobe

    People are fighting back the gay issue. If you want to be saved don't bash the gays AND do not give in to their propoganda. Stay smart and God Bless!

    June 5, 2012 at 3:50 am |
  10. Charmin'

    Hey, rather that than beheadings and suicide bombings. Disagree with me however you want and we can have a debate but once violence is involved, it becomes a different matter

    June 5, 2012 at 3:47 am |
  11. Donkey Party

    What gives anyone the right to judge another? And how dare you speak for God, especially if you don't know whether his views have "evolved" on the subject.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:43 am |
    • Charmin'

      take your pill

      June 5, 2012 at 4:23 am |
    • Selendis

      I get it, and completely agree. You would think "god fearing christians" should understand "he who is without sin, cast the first stone"

      June 5, 2012 at 4:42 am |
  12. Roberto

    "You've got to be taught to hate a lot--before you are 6 or 7 or 8-you've got to be carefully taught to hate--you've got to be carefully taught"
    From "South Pacific" movie and stage/

    June 5, 2012 at 3:40 am |
  13. John

    If the church didn't teach a form of hate clothed in its religious beliefs, this would never have happened. They are not teaching Jesus but the devil. easy enough to prove just read all that Jesus taught in the four gospels. he never taught or condoned hate, but said it was the work of the devil. When Peter went against what Jesus taught, Jesus told Peter that he was an offence to him. In other words, hate is not a part of God, but the devil. So all those churches and Pastors out there are really preaching the devil and not Jesus or God. think about it.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:39 am |
  14. GodFreeNow

    Some people keep saying that christians should ease up on their views. To the contrary, I think it is we who should hold christians to the standards they promote. Eating shellfish in the bible carries a death sentence. Why isn't that being enforced in the christian communities and how can we see more of it? Disagree with a judge or priest? Death. Picking up sticks on the sabbath? Death. Not a virgin on your wedding night? Death. If you're engaged, being r@ped and you don't "cry out"? Death.

    I for one think it's time for the rest of the world to hold christians to the standards that they are expecting of everyone else.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:38 am |
    • SWbeth

      Godfree, is it so upsetting to you when someone disagrees with your lifestyle that you want to see them dead? So you are advocating State controlled murder of Christians? Does your form of tolerance allow for that kind of censorship? Sounds like you have become the very thing you hate.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:04 am |
    • Matt

      SWbeth – You do realize that GodFreeNow was being satirical while referring to actual passages in The Bible (mostly Leviticus), right? Please tell me you realize that and that.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:14 am |
    • GodFreeNow

      Yeah, I think it's funny that SWbeth thinks I have a problem with someone disagreeing with my lifestyle. As was pointed out, these are taken directly from the bible, so take it up with god if you don't like it. Personally, I don't think these kinds of wackos should be censored. They only serve to strengthen atheist positions though no effort of our own.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:22 am |
    • Veritas

      Hilarious that SWbeth doesn't understand that this is straight out of their bible. Almost all christians have no idea what kind of nonsense and outrageous "morality" is preached in the bible and especially in the OT. It is sad that this several thousand year old anachronistic nonsense is still taken seriously by so many in this once great nation.

      June 5, 2012 at 4:50 am |
  15. Caiha

    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities – Voltaire. I'm not sure if he was talking about religion specifically, but it sure does qualify. Ironically, he's the same guy who said he'd defend your right to free speech to the death... clearly even he thought there needs to be limits.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:36 am |
  16. Donkey Party

    Whew, between the false prophets (like the ones commenting here), and Republicans, Hell sure is going to have long chow lines.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:29 am |
  17. kirk

    For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you NO GREATER BURDEN than these necessary things;
    That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well.)

    June 5, 2012 at 3:27 am |
    • GodFreeNow

      Is this Kirk Cameron again?

      June 5, 2012 at 3:32 am |
    • kirk

      i have no idea of who you speak GFN and you words bear no weight and have no meaning other than to disparage or insult

      June 5, 2012 at 3:35 am |
    • kirk

      i can listen to the words of peter and paul quoted above or something like you ill take the former thanks

      June 5, 2012 at 3:37 am |
    • GodFreeNow

      So that's a "yes"?

      June 5, 2012 at 3:39 am |
  18. Emperor Vadik, CA

    Hate is hate, no matter how you try to spin it.....

    June 5, 2012 at 3:25 am |
  19. spangler

    'Did ye not knowi it is character which is judged and that love is never a sin?' HoeMowErectus 2:14

    June 5, 2012 at 3:23 am |
  20. MayanGuy

    Here's a thought. Let's kill those that beleive differently that Me.... That really has not worked out well in history. Yes, this church teaches hate. Obama's did as well. Personally, I think anyone with a hyphenated description is an idiot (Gay-American, African-American, Democratic-American, Republican-American... Ect.,) What can ya do? Recluse yourself from stupid talk... That would work. How many folks in world history performed atrocities with the weak excuse of "I was just following orders". It sounds like this congregation probably neds to make a stand. ...Just a thought.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:21 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.