Pastor to Be Prosecuted for ‘Hate Crime’ of Calling Islam ‘Satanic,’ ‘Heathen’ During Sermon

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Pastor to Be Prosecuted for ‘Hate Crime’ of Calling Islam ‘Satanic,’ ‘Heathen’ During Sermon

By Heather Clark | christiannews.net

James-McConnellBELFAST, Northern Ireland — A pastor in Northern Ireland will be prosecuted with a hate crime for denouncing the Islamic religion during a Sunday sermon last year.

As previously reported, James McConnell, 78, pastor of the Whitewell Metropolitan Church in North Belfast, discussed Islam during an evening sermon in May 2014. During the message, McConnell denounced the religion and said that the contrast between it and Christianity is stark.

“The God we worship and serve this evening is not Allah,” he proclaimed, according to a video of the sermon. “The Muslim god—Allah—is a heathen deity. Allah is a cruel deity. Allah is a demon deity.”

McConnell then criticized the “foolish” British government for attempting to appease Muslims financially, saying that Islam is “Satanic” and “a doctrine spawned in Hell.” He also noted that Christians around the world are persecuted for their faith by the “fanatical worshipers” of Allah.

According to the Belfast Telegraph, McConnell’s remarks were inspired by the plight of Meriam Ibrahim—a Sudanese woman who was sentenced to hang after she was convicted of apostasy for refusing to deny her faith and convert to Islam.

But following McConnell’s sermon, the Police Service of Northern Ireland investigated the preacher for allegations of a hate crime. Northern Ireland’s Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness described the preacher’s comments as “hate mongering” and said the anti-Muslim statements “must be condemned in the strongest possible terms.”

John McCreedy, assistant pastor at Whitewell Metropolitan Church, also soon resigned from his position because McConnell would not retract his statements. McConnell apologized for any offense he may have caused, but would not recant his sentiments.

“I spent many days trying to sort this, without success, and I could not continue after the pastor’s initial remarks were not withdrawn,” McCreedy told the Belfast Telegraph.

“The theological arguments presented by the pastor are a contradiction to my own beliefs—religious, political and moral—in relation to New Testament evangelism,” he continued. “Neither are they the views of many others I have spoken to at Whitewell, who have for years reached out to others from every ethnic background and denomination.”

Now, because McConnell refused a lesser punishment by the government following police questioning, prosecutors have decided to move the matter forward in court. The hate crimes charge appears to be related to the sermon being streamed online.

“I can confirm that following consideration of a complaint in relation to an internet broadcast of a sermon in May 2014, a decision was taken to offer an individual an informed warning for an offence contrary to the Communications Act 2003,” a spokesperson for the Northern Ireland’s Public Prosecution Service told the publication Premier.

“That offence was one of sending, or causing to be sent, by means of a public electronic communications network, a message or other matter that was grossly offensive,” he continued. “The offer of an informed warning was refused by the defendant and accordingly the matter is now proceeding by way of a summary prosecution in the Magistrates Court.”

It is not yet known when McConnell’s trial will begin.

7 Comments on “Pastor to Be Prosecuted for ‘Hate Crime’ of Calling Islam ‘Satanic,’ ‘Heathen’ During Sermon”

  1. J. Dalton

    Just as surely as I am typing these words, this kind of persecution is coming to the saints in America. The foundation has already been laid for it to be done. I don’t believe the Lord will tarry much longer. These are undeniable signs of the times. Even so, come Lord Jesus.

  2. Lille

    I’m shocked, why in the world, did this pastor get in trouble for this, and others who literally are murdering people are excused, or i should say their faith must be protected. seriously? Miriam Ibrahim is a classic example of what happens to those who choose not to serve their god… what i dont understand is how the co-pastor kinda left him hanging out to dry…i believe the co pastor was trying not to step on toes, n yes, if their fellowship, congregation helped a lot of people from different background, race, and religions…that is ok, that is what we are called to do. but don’t let your Pastor who is telling the truth, not sugar coating, out to dry!!!!.support him, stand up for him!!!..my goodness congregation, if he said this, hasnt’t he been telling you this persecution was gonna come? I don’t know him and never heard him teach, but if he said this boldly, I’m sure he has warned his congregants about these things to come.
    pray for our leaders in the church. pray for their protection, pray for the church to stand strong. pray saints.

  3. walk23

    Another tactic of Satan to silence the Truth. Paul tells Timothy in the Scripture to preach the Word both in and out of season. Governments come and go and so does the sentiments of those in power. Several weeks ago, our big eared friend in the White House tried the same tactic after the Supreme Court ruled against God’s laws on marriage.by saying that the religious people need to get over it It’s the tactic to Satan to quiet the Word or silence It. But We will not be silent !

  4. Charles

    The assistant pastor has no balls or backbone and he probably was the one that sold him out, and rest of these so called believers have no guts at all. We better wise up cause when the Holy Ghost pulls our number and it is our time to step out full of the Holy Ghost to speak against all this filth we are going straight to the guillotine or the firing range people wise up the World hates Jesus and so does religious people

  5. Lebo

    I am confused. Is there anything wrong with noticing that the attributes of Allah closely resemble those of Satan and look nothing like those of Elohim? Or that Allah doesn’t suffer anyone to have free will? Are these very things not clearly and unequivocally delineated in both Holy Scripture (the bible) and the Quran? The only reasonable response for a Christian is to love the Muslim like Jesus and tell him the truth.

  6. 1 servant

    Lord I want to be ready to stand boldly for the TRUTH. Its coming North American Church! Make sure your in the faith saints and connected to the VINE Because He alone is and will be our source of strength and life, and lets keep our pastors and leaders girded up with prayer, along with Pastor McConnell and Pastor Said Abadini who is imprisoned in Iran,Asia Bibi of Pakistan who has a death sentance hanging over her head and others who are in chains for the testimony of Jesus, lets pray for them as if we were in chains with them. Even so come Lord Jesus! The Spirit and the Bride say come!

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