Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Evangelical Northern Irish preacher, 78, told worshippers ‘Islam is satanic’: Pastor is charged with spreading ‘grossly offensive’ message that was streamed online

When an expression of religious opinion is criminalized, Britain's entire tradition of religious tolerance and free religious speech is jeopardized

An evangelical preacher who branded Islam 'satanic' is standing trial after being charged with spreading a 'grossly offensive' message online.

James McConnell from County Antrim, Northern Ireland, was charged in connection with a controversial speech he made from the pulpit of the Whitewell Metropolitan Tabernacle in Belfast in March 2014.

The sermon was streamed online and now the 78-year-old is being prosecuted under the 2003 Communications Act, after saying: 'Islam is heathen. Islam is satanic.'

At Belfast Magistrates today, a DVD of the entire May 2014 service including prayers, scripture reading and hymn singing was played to the court.

Meanwhile, in his opening speech, prosecutor David Russell said the decision to proceed with the case was 'proportionate and necessary.'

Mr Russell said: 'He (McConnell) characterises the followers of an entire religion in a stereotypical way. And that's grossly offensive and that's not protected from saying it from a pulpit.

'It has nothing to do with religion or freedom of expression of his freedom to preach.' [How come?]

The court was told that in a prepared statement given to police during an interview, McConnell said he had not intended to cause offence, insult, arouse fear or stir up tension. He abhorred violence and apologised, the court heard.



Anonymous said...

Great Britain is on a downward spiral to appease Muslims who have been allowed in.

Anonymous said...

Truth is no defense in the PC world. Guess they figure they'll lose their heads last.
Or perhaps their folly is tacit acknowledgement that a liberal losing his head is
really no loss at all.

Anonymous said...

How about they monitor what is preached in the Mosques as well?

I'd bet that far more "offensive" speech goes on there than what they are trying this man for.

Mark In Mayenne said...

There is something behind this. Have they threatened to cut off the oil unless we pander to heresy?

Bird of Paradise said...

Anything the Euroweenie Union can to to appease the islamic butchers of thousands of christians this is what happens when you open your nations borders like like what Obama the Fink is doing right now

Anonymous said...

These prosecutions are truly chilling.
Even if, like me, you think what these people are saying is silly or wrong or even offensive, for government to tell a religion what it can and cannot preach is the make the government the religion and means the end of religious freedom.

Anonymous said...

But the preacher is right too, Islam IS satanic. One of the first things God hates above all other things is lying because it was through lies that satan brought about the first sins in Adam and Eve.

Yet the Muslim is told that it is ok to lie to the unbeliever, that alone shows they serve a different god and a satanic god at that.

Alpha Skua said...

So who said the Soviet Union died when the wall came down? This is rfeasons we need to oppose Obama's illegal imagration plans