Banned anti-gay pastor, Steven Anderson, has claimed that someone will travel to Dublin in his place.
The 38 year-old is prevented from preaching in Ireland due to the implementation of the 1999 Immigration Act, effectively making him the first person to be banned from Ireland in the state’s history.
This decision by Minister for Justice, Charlie Flanagan, comes after a petition to block Steven Anderson from entering the country garnered over 25,000 signatures. This petition was organised by All Out and LGBT Ireland, partnered with GCN.
The anger surrounding his proposed visit comes partly as a result of his homophobic teachings: he has repeatedly equated homosexuality with paedophilia.
In the aftermath of the 2016 shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida – in which 49 LGBT+ people lost their lives – Anderson stated that “there’s 50 less [sic] paedophiles in this world, because, you know, these homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts and paedophiles.”
He has also called homosexuality “a wicked and evil practice.”
His anti-gay views are only a part of his controversial rhetoric. He has repeatedly downplayed the effects of the Holocaust, stating: “I do not believe the official narrative. I do not believe six million Jews were killed. I believe some were killed.”
In the past, he has prayed for the death of then-US President Barack Obama and has called Pope Francis “the anti-Christ.”
Anderson’s church is not affiliated with any particular Christian denomination. He was invited to Ireland by people who subscribe to his YouTube channel.
In response to the ban, he describes Minister Flanagan, as being “anti- the true word of God,” but states that it also “permits more people to find out about me.” His YouTube channel currently has 118,781 subscribers.
Anderson does not say who his replacement would be or where they would speak and claims that his ban is Ireland’s loss.
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