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National Christian Leader Denounces Phelps' Appearance at Virginia Tech

Contact: Dane Rose, 202-546-8329, ext. 106, DaneRose@FaithAndAction.org; Rev. Rob Schenck, 703-447-7686 cell; both with the National Clergy Council


WASHINGTON, April 20 /Christian Newswire/ -- The Reverend Rob Schenck (pronounced SHANK), an Evangelical minister and president of the interdenominational National Clergy Council in Washington, DC, released this statement today in response to the planned appearance of Pastor Fred Phelps of Topeka's Westboro Baptist Church at the campus of Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg, Virginia:


"Pastor Fred Phelps and his unbiblical, non-Christian venomous message are not only supremely offensive to the survivors and families of those lost in the Virginia Tech massacre, but to those of us who have prayed and wept with them.


"Mr. Phelps routinely violates the New Testament mandate of Christ in Matthew, Chapter 5, to love others, even those he perceives to be his enemies, and St. Paul's admonition that if we 'have not love,' we are as meaningless as 'a tinkling cymbal.'


"Mr. Phelps does not speak for or represent the sentiments of the majority of Bible-believing Christians or ministers in this country. He speaks only for himself and not for historic Christianity. His rants deserve to be utterly rejected and ignored by anyone of serious Christian faith."


The National Clergy Council represents 5000 church leaders and 30,000 lay associate members from all Christian traditions.