"If Hating Homosexuals Makes Our Church a Hate Group Then That's What We Are"

I've written several posts already about Religious Right groups fighting back against the Southern Poverty Law Center's updated list of anti-gay hate groups, so I guess I should also note that not everyone on the list is upset about.

In fact, Steven Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church is on the list and he openly admits that he "absolutely" hates gays:

Tucked in a Tempe strip mall sits the Faithful Word Baptist Church .

The church is not new and the controversy surrounding the beliefs of its leader are not new. However, a report released Wednesday by the Southern Poverty Law Center gives the church a new label.

The SPLC is now listing the church as a hate group targeting homosexuals in a list of hate groups operating in Arizona.

"Do I hate? Absolutely," said Faithful Word Baptist Church Pastor Steven Anderson.

Anderson wasn't aware of the new article and label by the SPLC and wasn't surprised. When asked if he hates homosexuals, Anderson quickly said, "absolutley."

Anderson's church made headlines several months ago when one of its members carried a rifle outside a downtown Phoenix building during a visit by President Barack Obama.

On Wednesday night, prior to service, Anderson declined to read the article posted by the SPLC.

"Am I all about hate? No I'm sure I'm more about love than I am hate," Anderson said. "I do hate homosexuals and if hating homosexuals makes our church a hate group then that's what we are."

The church leader, with a Bible in his hand during the interview, said he preaches his hatred for homosexuals and wishes death upon them.