As our country descends further and further down the slippery slope of government enforced “Homosexual Acceptance”, Fox News’ Todd Starnes has no problems finding examples of Christian persecution at the hands of embolden militant homosexual
activists terrorist and governments agencies.
Mr. Starnes sites the latest example of an Oregon bakery, Sweet Cakes By Melissa, which has been terrorized out of business.
A family-owned Christian bakery, under investigation for refusing to bake a wedding cake for a lesbian couple, has been forced to close its doors after a vicious boycott by militant homosexual activists.
Sweet Cakes By Melissa posted a message on its Facebook page alerting customers that their Gresham, Ore. retail store would be shut down after months of harassment from pro-gay marriage forces.
“Better is a poor man who walks in integrity than a rich man who is crooked in his ways,” read a posting from Proverbs on the bakery’s Facebook page.
“It’s a sad day for Christian business owners and it’s a sad day for the First Amendment,” owner Aaron Klein told me. “The LGBT attacks are the reason we are shutting down the shop. They have killed our business through mob tactics.”
Last January, Aaron and Melissa Klein made national headlines when they refused to bake a wedding cake for a lesbian couple.
Klein tells me he has nothing against homosexuals — but because of their religious faith, the family simply cannot take part in gay wedding events.
“I believe marriage is between a man and a woman,” he said. “I don’t want to help somebody celebrate a commitment to a lifetime of sin.”
The lesbian couple filed a discrimination with the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries and told their story to local newspapers and television statements.
Within days, militant homosexuals groups launched protests and boycotts. Klein told me he received messages threatening to kill his family. They hoped his children would die.
The LGBT protestors then turned on other wedding vendors around the community. They threatened to boycott any florists, wedding planners or other vendors that did business with Sweet Cakes By Melissa.
“That tipped the scales,” Klein said. “The LGBT activists inundated them with phone calls and threatened them. They would tell our vendors, ‘If you don’t stop doing business with Sweet Cakes By Melissa, we will shut you down.’”
To make matters worse, the Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries announced last month they had launched a formal discrimination investigation against the Christian family.
Commissioner Brad Avakian told The Oregonian that he was committed to a fair and thorough investigation to determine whether the bakery discriminated against the lesbians.
“Everybody is entitled to their own beliefs, but that doesn’t mean that folks have the right to discriminate,” he told the newspaper. “The goal is to rehabilitate. For those who do violate the law, we want them to learn from that experience and have a good, successful business in Oregon.”
In other words, Christians who live and work in Oregon must follow man’s law instead of God’s law. But in a show of benevolence, the state is willing to rehabilitate and reeducate Christian business owners like the Kleins.
Klein said the closing of their retail store was a small price to pay for standing up for their religious beliefs.
“As a man of faith, I am in good spirits,” he said. “I’m happy to be serving the Lord and standing up for what’s right.”
As if that wasn’t enough, recently the National Park Service began requiring permits for churches to hold baptismal services in public waters on park grounds.
Mr. Starnes states in his “American Dispatch”:
The National Park Service began enforcing a policy recently that required churches to obtain special use permits in order to baptize in public waters. As part of the same permit process, the NPS also mandated that churches give the Park Service 48 hours advance notice of pending baptisms.
But as any Baptist or Pentecostal in good standing knows – that’s a problem.
“If the Holy Spirit is working on Sunday morning, you’re going to baptize Sunday afternoon,” Dennis Purcell told The Salem News. “You may not know ahead of time.”
Many Christians believe that the Bible commands new followers of Christ to be baptized immediately after their conversion. It’s a public expression and celebration of their new-found faith in Christ.
The National Park Service told local churches the permits were needed to “maintain park natural/cultural resources and quality visitor experiences, specific terms and conditions have been established.”
The feds also closed vehicle access to a sandbar along a popular creek in the Ozark Mountains, meaning churches could no longer drive their elderly members to the outdoor baptisms. And to make sure the Baptists behaved, they placed large boulders in the area to block car traffic.
The NPS did remove the policy after Rep. Jason Smith became involved. What is very disturbing is that such a directive could go out at all.
The congressman summed the situation up well:
“I am very troubled by any federal rule that requires churches to apply for a permit for the purpose of baptism, especially when these traditional activities have been done in the rivers and streams of this nation since its founding,” the congressman wrote.
He pointed out the National Park Service does not require a 48-hour notification from fisherman or swimmers – so why churches?
“One would hope that the answer is not ‘because the National Park Service wants to limit the number of baptisms performed on the river.”
Christians, we are in trouble. The very people sworn to uphold our religious rights are now treating Christians as criminals. What we thought could never happen in the United States of America is happening under our very noses today. Our time to worship freely and according to God’s Word are rapidly drawing to a close.
Soon you will be forced to either give up the right to worship God, in order to stay compliant with man’s secular law, or be forced “underground” to worship God as “criminals”.
Choose wisely Christians.