Church says deadly blast 'God's curse'

Nov. 9, 2010 at 4:52 PM
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SAN BRUNO, Calif., Nov. 9 (UPI) -- A couple from a notorious Kansas church demonstrating against gays in San Bruno, Calif., were far outnumbered by counter-protesters.

Shirley Phelps-Roper, daughter of the Rev. Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church, her husband and their young son held signs Monday morning outside Capuchino High School claiming the deadly gas explosion in San Bruno was a "curse" sent by God for tolerance of homosexuality. A larger group of people gathered on the other side of the street.

The Westboro group also picketed outside YouTube. They said the video-sharing site removes items that support the church's views.

The church in Topeka, Kan., is not affiliated with any Baptist organization and has a congregation consisting mostly of the extended Phelps family. Its activities have included picketing the funerals of soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, saying their deaths are a consequence of tolerating homosexuality.

Phelps-Roper said students at Capuchino High School are "walking in darkness."

Commander Mark Raffaelli of the Millbrae Police Department said the counter-protest was done "in a classy manner."

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