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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — An anti-gay sign outside of a Wilmington church resulted in a protest Sunday morning. The message, which had been up since last week instructed gays to ‘turn or burn’

“It’s kind of like salt in a wound,” said Tammy Heuring, the wife of the Seagate Community Chapel pastor. “However, salt does heal a wound. It just hurts really bad at first.”

The Seagate Community Chapel off of Oleander drive put up a controversial sign which read “God loves gays but hates perverted lives, turn or burn’

“Without having the space, the person who does the sign used the most concise wording that they could,” said Pastor David Heuring. “Was that the best wording possible? I don’t think so.”

The sign has since been vandalized. On Sunday morning a heart was spray painted over it and all that was left was the phrase ‘god loves gays.’ Church members then added ‘but he hates sin.’

Wilmington Pride, an area organization that supports homosexuals wanted to do something about the message they called hateful.

“Do you know how many kids go past here,” said TR Nunley, president of Wilmington Pride. “They might be struggling with their sexuality and see that and at the least they would feel bad about themselves and at the most maybe they would attempt suicide or something.”

The group organized a peaceful protest across the street from Seagate.

“We had a lot of dialogue,” said Pastor David Heuring. “We were probably over there for half an hour or so passing out drinks and talking with them.”

Pastor Heuring says the ‘turn or burn’ sign is the first in a series of signs they will be putting up about different types of sinners.

Comment on this Story

  • Perry Mann

    The same word (abomination) is used for man on man relations and eating shell fish in Leviticus. So as soon as the Pride Parade is over, let’s go picket the house of great abominations–Red Lobster.

    Anyone Interested?

  • God LOVES you ALL!! But there’s no miracle if you want to have eternal life, you must follow Him and live a Godly life. “Turn before it is too late.”

  • Guest

    yes but who wrote down the word of God? MAN. Man is faliable! Man has translated the word of GOD into many different languages so how do we know that with our limited understanding of GOD and GOD’s wisdom we have gotten it right. My favorite phrase from the Bible is “judge not, least ye be judged” I plan on leaving that to GOD! I will love my neighbor as myself and leave judgement to GOD who is so much smarter and wiser than I.

  • TR Nunley

    My name is TR Nunley and I am the President of Wilmington Pride. If you want to get involved with improving the GLBTQIA community and stand up for people’s please email me at wilmingtonpride@gmail.com.

    AS for the sign, my sympathy goes out to the church for someone destroying their sign. I was one the last person to leave the protest and the sign was fine when I left. When I returned to the site at 6:00 to do an interview with wway.com, it was destroyed. We have no idea who would do this kind of thing and do not condone the actions of this person. It also takes away for the peaceful action that we were striving for.

    Wilmington Pride’s mission statement: We are dedicated to supporting individual and community development through social and educational activities, raise awareness, promote equality, facilitate supportive services and groups, identify needs and advocate for resources benefiting the diverse population of GLBTQIA in the Cape Fear region.


  • Guest

    I know quite precisely what I’m talking about. Regardless of whatever theological mumbo-jumbo the Baptists and other sects have come up with to enable their consumption of pork, either the Bible is the literal word of God or it isn’t. Period. If the endlessly quoted, “Thou shalt not lie with a man as with a woman..” is the literal word of God, then so are the very numerous references to pork as an abomination. Of course, this had to be diddled around with because otherwise Gentiles wouldn’t have converted to Christianity. But we can still claim that the first quote is the literal word of God and beat up on gay people because, heck, they’re only 2%-3% of the population and we can get away with it and feel holy about it, too. But Lord, Lord, don’t take away our BBQ pork!!! And we men don’t want anyone cutting a piece of THAT off, so we’ll explain that God didn’t really mean it about circumcision, either. At least not for us, anyway. Phew!!

  • Guest7969

    ya what…read the Bible from cover to cover…then come back and let me know what you have learned about unclean animals and why Baptist don’t believe certain animals are considered unclean anymore…until then don’t act like you know what your talking about.

  • Guest11221

    You could not have said it any better. I know a lot of ?Christian? people that lie, steal, etc., etc.

  • Guest

    It could very well have been a fundamentalist Christian in order to discredit PRIDE and garner support for their bigotry.

  • el.train

    after what i consider an amazing turnout of a large group of concerned citizens taking a peaceful, yet passionate stand for a great cause, it seems that somebody has taken the low road in the destruction of private property in an effort of retaliation against something offensive. as americans, we should be able to pride ourselves in the rights that we have. freedom of speech and the right to PEACEABLY assemble to share our disagreements with one another. the sign that was put out by the seagate community chapel was a very blatant and obviously offensive message. when we stood together yesterday to share our message of LOVE and acceptance it felt like we actually made some progress and were able to have some great conversations with members of the church as well as people that share our own views. the destruction of the church’s sign is more offensive to me than what was written on the sign. this is an embarrassment and a disgrace to our entire community. i hope that the actions of few will not be recognized more than the congregation of many. i am disappointed, but i am proud and very happy that we all came together to stand for what we believe in.

  • Guest3130

    I didn’t see anywhere (on-air or newspaper) that absolutely identified the destructive person as being on one side or the other of this matter, so why is everyone ASS-uming it was a gay protester???

  • Guest008

    I believe the sign read “GOD LOVES GAYS BUT HATES PERVERTED LIFE STYLES,TURN OR BURN” not perverted lies. That said, if they are referring to what people do in their bedroom then there is a bunch of people, straight and gay, who has a preverted life style including most of the posters on here, even if your a “staunch heterosexual”.

  • It’s pretty obvious that you are not a Christian, because there is something you seem to be confused about. A true Christian believes the Bible to be what it is…the Word of God. Period. It is the hypocrites who choose the versus of convenience. God sees homosexuality as an abomination. Those are not my words…they are God’s words. It is absolutely wrong for you and others like you to judge Christians. You make negative comments based on something you know nothing about. A true Christian is not haughty or judgemental. A true Christian is following the word of God.

  • Guest

    Well, Phillyguy, you don’t have to be a biblical scholar to know that God does not approve of eating pork: the bible says it’s unclean, and the people who eat it are filthy abominations. So when is the church going to put up a “turn or burn” sign for ham, bacon and BBQ ribs?

  • Guest

    This e-mail was forwarded to me by a very special person in my life and is applicable to many situations, all who condemn and hate for any reason should take a moment to contemplate the reasons why.

    If we could read the secret history of our enemies, we should find in each man’s life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.
    –Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    Most of us make trouble for ourselves by over-reacting to what others say or do. We have conditioned ourselves to see everyone else as “the enemy” rather than look within ourselves for the real cause of our distress.

    If we can pause long enough to uncover our own hidden discomfort and distorted attitudes before we react with harsh criticism or vindictive silence, we can change our destructive first impulses into a loving interchange between individuals.

    Today let me not be quick to criticize or condemn another. I will look at others as friends, not as foes, on my journey toward self-discovery.


  • Clevenative

    I thought I was getting hot because it was August. Now I know better.

  • Guestu

    Most Christians pick and choose Bible versus based on their own preconceived beliefs and what’s convenient for their lives. Only a very few will accept the Bible as all true. I’m not trying to minimize the pain and suffering that gay people experience, I just have a hard time seeing people get so upset from the comments and beliefs of complete hypocrites.

    And to the moron who smashed the sign, congratulations you just undermined any positive message the protesters were trying to convey.

  • phillyguy

    I read the message as while God loves gays, he does not approve perverted actions. Now I don’t claim to be a biblical scholar, I read as if two men, women want to maintain a house or sit on the beach and watch a sunrise, God probably does not care. However a straight, gay or anybody doing something like trying to pick up someone underage on say Craigslist and offering money for services or a teacher having relationship with a student, a different can of worms. As far as property destruction, it was uncalled for. I protested by going to my church and hearing the word.

  • Charles Walters

    First of all I was raised in church, and I do believe in god. I also refuse to go to church anymore, because of all the intolerant bigots that the church is full of today. The organized Christian religion has become the laughing stock of the worlds major religions. You have the idiots in the church who instead of practicing love and tolerance, practice hatred and bigotry. I have seen people in the church that think the louder they yell in a persons face about how evil and wrong they are, the more they think that person will change. You have church leaders that preach about forgiveness and sin that are closet homosexual themselves, but the preach that being gay is evil and a sin. I just want to know who gave the Seagate Community Chapel the right to be judge of anyone? For those who destroyed the sign two wrongs do not make a right. Do not give people like this any thing they can use to say, look what they did. Leave them to waller in their own misery. That is more punishment than you could ever give them.

  • Paul

    Thanks for shinning the light on that “not a homo”. It’s so simple really, isn’t it? You figured it out…hopefully you can enlighten others. I was 5 yrs. old when I first knew I wanted to see my dad’s pee-pee. Since then, I’ve always been “that way” and although it took me 20 more years to actually do anything about it…the original feeling never changed. Does anyone really think a 5 year old makes that choice for his life?

  • Guest81

    I am not a homosexual. I honestly believe that those who are had no more control over their sexual orientation than the did their hair color, eye color or build. I don’t understand why the religious zealots cannot figure out something this simple. I challenge each and every one of them (religious zealots)to post on this site the day, time, your age, or whatever, when someone came to you and asked if you prefereed to be heterosexual or homosexual and you had to make a choice.

  • Guest

    Amen and amen!!!

  • Guestbuffer

    Always the same argument, when did you choose to be straight….. Where is the gay gene.

    It makes sense to me that our DNA is programed, evolved whatever to procreate in order to survive. Anything other than that would be an abnormality.

    I never decided to be straight or gay if that’s what you are asking, I did decide whether or not to have sex with someone.

  • WSmith

    Tell me the story of the day you decided to be heterosexual. How long did you contemplate it? Did you talk it over with your parents? Did you look thru porn magazines to see what worked for you? Please enlighten me……

  • Guest0000

    how can one be a “staunch heterosexual?” that kind of cracks me up.

  • Guest461

    …and have no idea what they really are, You know… Sort of Gay, Bi-sexual, Bi-“curious”, straight turned gay , gay turned back to straight…whatever the convenience of title that depends on the moment I guess. Sure, if I were in those shoes, question marks would likely end every statement I would make.

    You see, cracked up one, I know what I am, who I am, what my purpose is and what my organs were provided for. I suppose I should consider myslf extremely lucky to have that clarity of mind and function.

  • Das Weibstück

    …….Coming from someone who hasn’t spent their entire “staunch heterosexual” life being putdown and condemned for something they have no control over.

  • Guest461

    This seems to be the same thinking that alcoholics, drug addicts, pedophiles and rapists use. Fortunately, a few of those I mentioned are STILL taboo…so far.

  • Guest7969

    You have NO control over your body? Sounds more and more like a mental problem…

  • Guest350

    Ignorance and stupidity both breed contempt. You are living proof.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    …but in the Christian mindset, that simply means that you have your work cut out for you. You’re going to have to really work hard to resist temptation and sin.

    The Bible can’t be used as a science text, but it was never intended to serve that purpose. For example, I know that the Earth wasn’t created in seven days, but that doesn’t mean God didn’t create it. Joshua’s having the trumpets blown didn’t bring down the walls of Jericho, but a heavenly sent earthquake may have.

    Moses may not have understood the scientific aspects of being born or conditioned into gay sex , but his writings may have been a warning against the excessive promiscuity that was a hallmark of homosexuality until Hepatitis B, C, and AIDS made people start to use their brains.

  • WhatWouldJESUSsay?

    Why would any Church that is supposed to love everyone like Jesus did purposely put up a sign that is seen by thousands everyday that is HATE FILLED? To think that anyone would choose to be GAY is the same as one would choose to have DOWN SYNDROME or a Brain Tumor or to be Blind or Deaf! Everyone has homosexuality in their family somewhere in their family tree. In my experienced life, I find the ones who condemn it so publicly are usually fighting being homosexual themselves. Shame on that church for causing so much pain in our community and shame on the ones who destroyed the sign.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    …but don’t ask them to change their deepest religious beliefs. If they believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God, they are ***NEVER*** going to accept your lifestyle. You may as well be a murderer to them, because the Biblical prohibitions are the same – you just “don’t do it.” Why is their acceptance of homosexuality even an issue? They don’t accept my view on abortion, and I could care less. You’re an Athiest – you should be able to ignore them easier than I can.

    Bottom line is that they have a right to have their sign say what they want it to as long it is on their property, and the criminal who vandalized it should be prosecuted if identified.

    Issues such as this actually cost the gay community supporters. I, for example, would fight to the death to insure your constitutional rights; what makes you think I’d do any less to protect THEIR constitutional rights?

  • WilmingtonMAJ

    is that this church burns to the ground. Preferably on a Sunday morning. I have the same amount of hate in my heart for these people as they have for me. It’s disgusting that people are so ignorant in this day and age…

  • Guest461

    It appears as though you have a “few” unresolved issues with your own lifestyle. Whether or not you have the ability to realize it, the vast majority of America still does not agree or accept the homosexual lifestyle as being “normal”. There is nothing “disgusting” about the prevailing opinion except the fact that you don’t happen to agree with it, a normal response to those in a state of denial. It simply is what it is and you cannot change it. As a staunch heterosexual, I would never “poke the ribs” as the church sign did. I simply ignore the lifestyle and “tolerate” it as long as I am left alone.

    You harbor a lot of anger over an issue that is in great dissention in our society. Just accept yourself, realize your position (no pun intended) and understand that the societal majority views on this subject will not change in your lifetime.

  • Just The Facts…

    the WPD can easily get the IP address of their first suspect, i.e., you?

    “It’s disgusting that people are so ignorant in this day and age…”

    Do you mean like how you wished for a building to burn down with dozens of people inside of it because of the content of a silly sign? You’re not that bright are you?

  • Brett

    As a resident of the Seagate Area and an out homosexual this is not the way to respond in the least bit to those who question our integrety, sexual orientation, and way of life. We all have the right to speak our minds, and condeming others, just as the church is doing, is counter productive to our cause. How awful to wish that others place of worship would burn down. I do not practice any religion, though I none the less consider myself to have strong morals, please turn your judgements inward and reflect upon yourselves. We are none in a place to judge each other on how we live our lives, with respect to our sexual orientation and partner(s).

  • Grand Ole Party

    Well if you harbor the same amount of hate for them that you assume they have for you, then that kind of makes you just as disgusting and ignorant as they are.

  • Guest 54545

    “Lying is another form of Management”

  • Guestywesty

    All of the old Bronze Age monotheisitic religions condemn homosexuality because they had no knowledge of science or genetics.

    The Old Testament claims the world is flat as a pancake. Epileptics were considered “posessed by demons” by the people of this time. Many people of this time who were mentally ill were stoned to death because they uttered “blasphemies”.

    Since the Bronze Age religions had no knowledge of science or psychology, or genetics, they condemned homosexuality.

    We now know that sexual orientation is not chosen but genetically and environmentally conditioned at a very early age–by the age of two. And being gay is an affectional orientation. Gay people are attracted emotionally and sexually to members of their own sex.

    Just as a heterosexual cannot change their sexual orientation, neither can a homosexual.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    I have no problem with homosexuality from a constitutional rights aspect. I sincerely believe that a gay man or Lesbian is entitled to the exact same rights and privileges as I am.

    That said, their demand that religions now embrace their lifestyle is over the top and must not be accepted. It is political correctness gone wild. Homosexuality is resoundingly condemned in both the Old and New Testament. Judaism and Islam condemn it as well. No religion with a speck of integrity and fundamental belief in the Bible is going to alter their teaching from what they believe is the inspired word of God.

    By virtue of our Constitution the government has to accept you – there is no such requirement placed upon religion or churches. This church had every right to post a message that is based on fundamental Christian teaching. No one, however, had a right to vandalize that sign.

    Isn’t it ironic that a group of people who have had their rights denied in the past are now willing to deny others their rights?

  • anne

    I agree with you. I listened to the news last night and heard some of the negative comments made against the church. There were some very ignorant comments made – you can tell who has been to church and has not. God did not make homosexuals. The Bible clearly condemns it – those that are ignorant to its words will not be excused. Homosexuality is a life choice just as choosing to drink or take drugs is. Society has made the excuse that is by birth, but that won’t fly come judgement day.

    Your last sentence speaks volumes. The same ones out there protesting and those that protest all over the country, are the same ones denying yours and my rights to speak our thoughts on the subject. Let a Christian make a stand and no one believes they should. It is going to get much worse as satan fights more and more to gain the souls of the wicked.

  • GuestHetero

    I’m eagerly waiting for Seagate’s next sign chastizing those sinful wearers of cloth made from different fibers (Leviticus 19:19) and the following sign against those wicked wicked people who dare eat shrimp and lobster (Leviticus 11:9-12)…

    Oops, I’m wearing polyester/cotton blends and I’m feeling a lot of heat… I may be burning already…

    Oh nooooo! (woosh!)

    I guess they are too busy chastizing that they are forgetting something about the guy wearing sandals who came a long time after the Leviticus stuff who said something about loving your neighbor as yourself, helping the poor, feeding the hungry and so on. In fact, this guy was really big on sharing the wealth and caring for those less fortunate because what we do for them we do in His name…

    If only churches went back to what this guy was saying we’d all be better off.

  • Wanda77

    While many animals and practices were called out as unclean and forbidden, only one practice was highlighted as offensive to God directly.

    Second, you choose to overlook that the New Testament (Paul) also condemns homosexuality. It’s not only Levitticus.

  • Das Weibstück

    What a bunch of hate filled bigots ! Sad that they cant get in the news for doing good in the community, maybe the pastor needs to think about that. Luckily they are a small church. This pastor is on the same level as Fred Phelps and the Westboro nut jobs.

  • MLK Would Be So Displeased…

    and by hate filled loons, of course I mean the protesters – hatefully smashed the sign while protesting hate? How ironic to the point of complete stupidity. The guy who did it was drives a Ford Taurus so I’m guessing he was a back row student who settled for the brass ring in life? At first, I thought the church was in the wrong to post the content of the sign but this has helped me see that they were correct about the people they were condemning. There truly is something wrong with the people that the sign was targeting. The smashing of the sign and the subsequent denial of the first amendment rights of those who own it prove the original message of the sign was generally correct. My opinion has been changed.

  • Guest340

    What has vandalism go to do with homosexuality? I think you’re totally confused and don’t have a clue what is happening. Minds like yours is one of the main reasons we are in such a mess today.

  • Guest

    @MLK…So your version of Christianity breaks down to Ford Taurus=deadbeat. Now that you’ve exposed yourself as an intolerant snob with contempt for those less fortunate, your hatefulness and bigotry reagarding gay people is not so surprising.

  • anne

    To add to something I posted earlier – to you who decided to destroy the sign. The only thing you proved was that you are full of hate and have no sense of what is right anyway. How dare you decide that it is your right to destroy the sign? And to the one who posted about the church being burned, how dare you? Who do you think you are making that judgement. You talk about the church being judgemental – you are of the worse kind! Your stupidity and ignorance dominates you. Now – who is worse; the church that is fulfilling its mission to witness to the world or you and your kind who is showing hate and stupidity?

  • Guest421

    Who cares what the Christians say. Come join the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The FSM welcomes all people of all orientations.

  • Guest

    I see you have been touched by noodly appendages too!


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