Franklin Graham is forcing coronavirus relief volunteers to agree that gays face ‘eternal damnation’

Anti-LGBT preacher Franklin Graham of Samaritan's Purse

Anti-gay evangelist Franklin Graham is making all volunteers offering to work as part of his New York coronavirus relief effort sign an anti-LGBT+ belief statement.

Graham, known for praising Vladimir Putin’s anti-gay laws and blaming gay people for a “moral 9/11”, has been granted permission by NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio for his evangelical charity Samaritan’s Purse to build a makeshift tent hospital in New York City’s Central Park.

The 68-bed field hospital will begin treating overflow patients from Mount Sinai, and Graham has put out a call for “Christian doctor, nurse, paramedic, or other medical professionals” to sign up to work there.

Franklin Graham makes coronavirus volunteers agree that gays face ‘eternal damnation’.

However, PinkNews has confirmed that medical personnel applying via the Samaritan’s Purse website are forced to assent to an anti-gay belief statement, in line with Graham’s other ventures.

Before even detailing their medical credentials during the application process, volunteers are presented with a “Statement of Faith”, which stipulates: “We believe God’s plan for human sexuality is to be expressed only within the context of marriage, that God created man and woman as unique biological persons made to complete each other.

“God instituted monogamous marriage between male and female as the foundation of the family and the basic structure of human society. For this reason, we believe that marriage is exclusively the union of one genetic male and one genetic female.”

Members of Samaritans's Purse, put the finishing touches on a field hospital in New York's Central Park on March 30, 2020 in New York City.

Members of Samaritans’s Purse, put the finishing touches on a field hospital in New York’s Central Park on March 30, 2020 in New York City. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

The statement also says that those who stray from the puritanical beliefs will face “damnation and eternal punishment” in Hell.

There is no way to proceed with the application without agreeing to the statement, with the page only offering the option: “I acknowledge that I have read the Statement of Faith and agree to abide by the ministry guidelines of Samaritan’s Purse.”

New York mayor Bill de Blasio has praised Samaritan’s Purse venture.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat and supporter of LGBT+ rights, has praised Samaritan’s Purse and ignored Graham’s anti-LGBT+ record.

He said during a press conference earlier this week: “Mount Sinai Hospital, working with a relief organisation named Samaritan’s Purse, is creating a 68-bed field hospital. This is the kind of thing you will see now as this crisis develops.

“The partnership with Central Park Conservancy, our Parks Department, the Mayor’s Office, we’ve all worked together to get this done with Mount Sinai and Samaritan’s Purse. It should be operational by Tuesday.”

A City Hall spokesperson insisted to Gothamist that the field hospital site must adhere to Mount Sinai’s policy against discrimination – despite clear indications it is already not doing so.

The spokesperson told the outlet: “Our record on human rights is clear; and we are confident that the joint effort by Mt. Sinai and Samaritan’s Purse will save New Yorkers’ lives while adhering to the values we hold dear by providing care to anyone who needs it, regardless of background.”

The charity has a deeply controversial history under Graham’s leadership, and has been accused in the past of exploiting relief work to evangelise to the needy.