Sister-in-law of anti-LGBT pastor speaks out

The sister-in-law of Verity Baptist Church Pastor Roger Jimenez is now speaking out and hoping to spread a very different message than what was heard in that video. June 17, 2016

On Sunday night, while most people were mourning the 49 lives lost in the Orlando shooting, a Sacramento pastor was praising the massacre.

The video of his sermon was posted onto YouTube and sparked outrage.

In an interview with ABC10, Pastor Roger Jimenez of Verity Baptist Church, stood by everything he said in the video.

His sister-in-law, who is bisexual, is now speaking out and hoping to spread a very different message than what was heard in that video.

Christina Peters is a member of The Table United Methodist Church. Right away, you can tell it's a LGBT-welcoming church. There is a pride flag outside the church with the message "All means all." Peters says that's the message of every Sunday service.

Peters knew right away who Pastor Jimenez was talking about in his sermon when he said "There are people in my personal life that we've had to just cut off and say, 'we can't be around you because you're a sodomite,' once we found out.'"

"When the image of my brother-in-law came across my Facebook feed, my first reaction was that of anger, disgust, and fear and then shame,” Peters said. “Shame that put me back into a place where I didn't want to claim him just like I haven't felt safe claiming my sexuality.”

But with the sanctuary and support of her church, Peters found it within herself to do more than just claim him. She forgave him.

"[I still] love him," she said. "I'm proud of my sister and brother-in-law. I don't agree [with their views] but they are following their path. They have built their church from the ground up."

Peters has attended a couple of those services but says she's never been comfortable with their message. Her current church, on the other hand, is open to everyone.

"You are welcome if you are questioning your faith, if you've been burned by the church, if you are a part of the queer community,” Peters said. “It really doesn't matter who you are because God loves you.”

That message is now pushing Peters to inspire others.

"Christina's message, for me, invited me back into a place for love. This is a human being as well. Hate is not going to triumph over hate," said Pastor Matthew Smith. "God's love is what does that."

Peters says Jimenez and his family are now in hiding because they have been receiving death threats. With protests happening at his church, Peters just wants people to remember the innocent lives who aren't at fault. That's one reason she hasn't been joining any of the protests.

"My two nieces and nephews are going to be walking into that church and they are four little children who have hearts of gold," Peters said. "And I don't want to be a part of anything that makes them scared."

Hundreds are expected to protest at Verity Baptist Church on Sunday. Peters says her church is open to everyone and she hopes people will attend their service instead of protesting.

Copyright 2016 KXTV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment