Preacher claims coronavirus is God’s punishment for same-sex marriage – despite it being banned in China and Italy

Preacher claims coronavirus is God's punishment for same-sex marriage

An evangelical preacher has insisted that coronavirus is actually God’s punishment for same-sex marriage.

In a church sermon, Tennessee preacher Perry Stone suggested that the spread of COVID-19 was a response to the legalisation of the “abomination” of equal marriage and abortion.

Coronavirus is God’s ‘reckoning’ for the abomination of gay marriage, apparently.

He said: “So why is there a reckoning? I’m gonna explain it in these simple terms. There’s a reckoning because the courts of the land passed a law to take an infant’s life… and for marriage, that we have known it, to be changed into something we’ve never known.

“And both of their laws, Biblically, in Leviticus and Deuteronomy, are what God calls an abomination… the Bible teaches us that God wants everyone to come to repentance, but there will be a time when the Lord says ‘Enough is enough.'”

While he is not the first preacher to attempt to blame coronavirus on gay people, Stone’s contribution seems particularly dumb –  given that same-sex marriage is not actually legal in any of the worst-impacted countries.

To date, more than half of all confirmed cases and three-quarters of confirmed deaths have been confined to just three countries – China, Italy, and Iran.

Same-sex marriage is banned in all three, with China censoring depictions of LGBT+ people in culture – while it’s against the law to be gay in Iran.

Italy, home to the Catholic Church, is one of the most conservative countries in Western Europe – and it continues to ban same-sex marriage, only permitting gay couples to enter a segregated form of civil union.

So if God is attempting to punish people for same-sex marriage, either they have terrible aim or he’s enacting a global collective punishment, which is a war crime under the Geneva Conventions of 1949. Not a good look, God.

Anti-LGBT+ evangelicals have absolutely lost the plot over COVID-19.

There have been many, many bizarre takes from right-wing preachers, pastors and religious figures since the coronavirus pandemic began.

Tennessee preacher Perry Stone

Tennessee preacher Perry Stone

Last week, an anti-LGBT+ pastor insisted that only “pansies” wash their hands.

Televangelist Jonathan Shuttlesworth said: “If you’re putting out pamphlets and telling everybody to use Purell [hand sanitiser] before they come into the sanctuary and don’t greet anyone, you should just turn in your ministry credentials and burn your church down – turn it into a casino or something.

“You’re a loser. Bunch of pansies. No balls. Got neutered somewhere along the line and don’t even realise it.”

Shuttlesworth went on to claim that “the devil doesn’t want there to be mass gatherings” and said this is as good a reason as any to let large crowds congregate.