Nicola Vincent-Abnett

Nicola Vincent-Abnett
"Savant" for Solaris, Wild's End, Further Associates of Sherlock Holms, more Wild's End

Sunday 23 March 2014

Fred Phelps has Died part ii: My Hopes were More than Answered

Firstly, I’d like to thank Jax for pointing out that, apparently Fred Phelps won’t be receiving a final farewell on this Earth.

It transpires that the Westboro Baptist Church doesn’t honour its dead with funerals, so they very neatly sidestepped that little problem... I might say ‘dodged that bullet’ if I was American or of a more aggressive bent, but I won’t.

In my last blog I hoped to God – and I’ll admit right here and now that I’m agnostic in my approach to the deity – that the funeral would pass peacefully, and that we could all be more human and more humane than the congregation of the Westboro Baptist Church, that no one would lower himself to their woeful moral standards.

I hoped there would be no protest at the funeral of Fred Phelps.

It turns out there can be no protest at the funeral of Fred Phelps since there is to be no celebration of his life and no goodbye ceremony. OK. That’s their choice. It’s probably for the best.

Despite their efforts, however, the Westboro Baptist Church was, in fact, hoist by its own petard. It was done to as it has done. And, in the process, my hopes were more than answered.

It is rare that I offer up a prayer. In fact, when I wrote my last blog I didn’t say that I prayed to any God that would listen; I only said that I hoped to any God. I’m not sure whether that’s the power of the human heart or the power of prayer, and I’m not sure the two are indivisible or that it matters.

What mattered when I saw this photograph on James Gunn’s FaceBook page was that someone had not only made my day, but they had shown the World what it is to have compassion.

The Westboro Baptist Church was protesting a Lorde concert when a small group of counter-protesters appeared with this banner. It gladdens my heart, and I believe that it should gladden yours.

And here's the full article


  1. Ironically, the comments thread on the linked article is one of the most troll-/entitlement-/&c.-ridden I have seen in many moons.

    1. I didn't read the comments. I probably should have.

    2. They do not weaken your argument. The irony merely amused me.

      Assuming you have not gone back to read them already, I absolve you of any burden to so do; one of us having read them is purgatory enough to meet any venality.