Thursday, March 31, 2011
Four years after his documentary on the notorious Westboro Baptist Church, Louis Theroux revisits the homophobic Kansas cult to see what has changed.
When the presenter first visited the 80-member family church in 2007, viewers were shocked at its beliefs and the use of young children in roadside pickets.
The church, which claims the death of soldiers is a sign of God’s wrath against homosexuality, is best known for picketing troops’ funerals with the chant ‘God Hates Fags’.
It continues to dominate headlines by upsetting mourners and condemning AIDS victims and its antics have resulted in members being barred from entering the UK.
But in a BBC Two programme to be screened on Sunday, Theroux finds the church has been shaken by a series of family defections and a Supreme Court struggle over free speech rights.
He discovers that members’ beliefs have become more extreme, including the assertions that President Obama is the ‘beast’ in the Book Of Revelation and that the second coming of Jesus is imminent.
Theroux, whose first film has been viewed by church members, is now reviled by them as “evil” for apparently mocking true Christianity.
However, they are keen to exploit the publicity he gives them and even present him with his own ‘Louis in Hell’ placard as a gift.
‘Louis Theroux – America’s Most Hated Family In Crisis’ will be shown on Sunday at 9pm on BBC Two.