On Super Bowl Sunday, 200 people gathered outside of a Catholic church — but not for the reasons you might think.
St. Peter’s in Portland, Oregon is a Spanish-speaking church that has been the target of racist and anti-immigration slurs from a local group that literally calls themselves “Bible Believers.” This group spreads their so-called love of God by shouting at the congregants, “Jesus is going to come back and judge every one of you,” along with accusations that members of St. Peter’s are not “True Christians” (™).
That’s why the local community joined forces to defend the Church and protect its members:
On Sunday, The Portland Tribune reported that about 200 people showed up to support the church, forming a line to protect the congregants. Juan Mayoral, one of the organizers of the event, said over email Monday that he thinks at least 300 people showed up a half an hour before the Sunday Spanish mass and that that number grew to between 600 and 800 at around noon.
“The atmosphere was for me personally, something that I have never experienced before,” Mayoral told us. “I have participated in many marches and protest before but this one — this one you could feel the love and support for everyone that was there. People were loving and supportive — labor, pro-immigration activists, church groups, anarchists, all different races and cultures!”
It’s a tactic that’s worked against Westboro Baptist Church, too — when people come together in solidarity, the hateful preachers appear pathetic by comparison.
(Screenshot via YouTube. Thanks to Richard for the link)