The Arizona pastor who celebrated the Orlando massacre and has generally made a name for himself spewing hate against gay people was apparently denied entry into the United Kingdom before being rejected by South Africa as well.
In a video blog, Faithful Word Baptist Church Pastor Steven Anderson says that he learned he wasn’t welcome in the UK when he checked in for a flight to South Africa, through London.
“I’m sitting outside the gate when I get paged by security,” Anderson recalls. “They tell me that the United Kingdom has banned me from entering the country and that I can’t even have a connecting flight in London. Not only am I banned from the UK, but I can’t even go to the London airport.”
After he flight was re-routed to avoid the London airport, Anderson learned that South Africa had barred his entry as well, on the grounds his church promotes hate speech. According to the church’s website, Anderson had planned a “soul-winning marathon” in Johannesburg, South Africa on Sunday.
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Since he couldn’t gain entry into the country, he says he went to Botswana — South Africa’s more conservative northern neighbor — instead. While South Africa’s constitutional protects the rights of gay people, homosexuality is still criminalized in Botswana.
After the rejection, Anderson tried to insult South Africa and claimed they were missing out.
“I wasn’t really that excited about visiting their so-called beautiful country which is the rape capital of the world,” Anderson said in the vlog. “It’s one of the most dangerous, wicked places in the entire world. I was actually going there for their sakes. I was trying to bring the gospel to the lost.”
South Africa has the highest rate of rape in the world, according to Interpol, including a significant problem with so-called “corrective rape” in which lesbians are assaulted in an attempt to change their sexuality.
The pastor has gained a reputation for his homophobia. Following the tragic shooting at an Orlando gay nightclub, he told his congregation the mass murder was a good thing.
“The good news is that there’s 50 less pedophiles in this world, because, you know, these homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts and pedophiles,” Anderson said. “That’s who was a victim here… just disgusting homosexuals at a gay bar.”
But that wasn’t the first time he advocated for the death of gay people. Back in 2014, Anderson grabbed headlines for a December sermon predicted an “AIDS-free world by Christmas” if all gay people were put to death.