NFL Player Loses Church Speaking Gig For Congratulating Jason Collins

leroy728You know what they say about the more things change… After Leroy Butler, a former Green Bay Packers safety, joined the huge chorus of other athletes who congratulated NBA player Jason Collins for coming out publicly as a gay man, he was informed his speaking engagement at a Wisconsin church had been canceled.

Butler has declined to reveal the name and denomination of the church but said he had been uninvited to speak as planned after using his Twitter account to say, ““Congrats to Jason Collins.”

After receiving the news Butler then sent a series of tweets that read:

“Wow, I was scheduled to speak at a church in WI, and a member said that the pastor wants to cancel my event. I said ok why? Then I was told, because I said congrats to Jason Collins on Twitter. I said really? we have a contract, he said check the moral cause, FYI the fee was $8,500, then I was told if I removed the tweet, and apologize and ask god forgiveness, I can have the event. I said no, only god can judge.”

In an interview with the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, Butler compared the church pastor’s behavior to bullying.

“This is a form of bullying, what you’re doing. You’re trying to get me to do something I don’t want to do,” Butler said. “He disagreed, and I said, ‘We agree to disagree’ and he said ‘No, I’m right and you’re wrong.’ ”

Butler later tweeted that he had received an apology from the church but said it was “mainly thanking me for not releasing the church name” and he will never work with the church again.

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  • Dakotahgeo

    Frankly, I’m not surprised. The churches and a minority of their pastors are the biggest hypocrites and backstabbers there are! No wonder people (mostly true Christians) despise the church. We are personally accountable to one God, and Jesus Christ, no one else! The churches and the rich, big. little men, need to learn this important lesson. They don’t teach it in Seminary. They expect a person to have enough common sense to figure that out! (Jus’ shakin’ m’ head in disgust!).

  • Alan down in Florida

    I’d sue for the $8500. I’d love to hear how a court would twist contract law by stating that his constitutionally protected right to expressing his opinion was in some way a violation of a morals clause.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @Alan down in Florida: That’s $8500 PLUS lawyer’s fees, PLUS damages for character assassination, et al. I wouldn’t let that church forget the name “Leroy Butler.” I hope Mr. Butler spends some time looking for true “Christian” churches to spread the Gospel of Love! It is worth it!

  • alterego1980

    That’s one of the problems with these protestant “mega-churches”. Each pastor is like a little pope whether they want to admit it or not. They don’t follow the word of Christ. They sit on their moral soapbox and cherry pick passages they want you to hear and then take all your money for their lavish lifestyles. Half the time they do it while getting a bj from a choir member behind their wife’s back. Biggest hypocrite’s in the world.

  • jwrappaport

    @Alan down in Florida: He doesn’t have a case. The Constitution protects you against the government, not private actors.

    @Dakotahgeo: Character assassination? I don’t like this guy either, but that’s a frivolous suit if I’ve ever seen one…

  • Geoff B

    Thrilled this guy stood up for what was right, and as a third generation Green Bay fan, even more thrilled that he was a Packer! Well done sir!

  • Badger88

    I want this church’s name to be publicly released. If it wants to act like a bully, then it deserves to be known as a bully. That way, tolerant Christians will know to pick a different church to attend: one that does follow Jesus’ teachings of unconditional love.

  • singforfood

    I’m more upset that this church was going to blow the better part of TEN GRAND just to have a guest speaker for one day. How much good could you do in the community for $8,500 freaking bucks??

  • Dakotahgeo

    @singforfood: This is just a partial extent that a right wing church will go to put someone, anyone, “on display” to prove their non-ethical/moral stance(s). Hypocrisy is cheap/expensive at times.

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