1. ITV Report

Protest as pastor accused of homophobia speaks at Dumfries church

Angus Buchan has performed to crowds of thousands of people. Credit: Independent Media

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender groups have staged a protest outside a church in Dumfries, where a controversial South African pastor has been speaking.

The groups accuse Angus Buchan of homophobia, pointing to reports that he said homosexuality could be cured by prayer, during a press conference in South Africa.

Around 40 protestors chanted outside the church. Credit: ITV Border
The protestors were invited to walk past the church while the talk was taking place. Credit: ITV Border

Angus Buchan had originally been scheduled to talk in Galashiels, in an event organised by the Hope Church.

However, the Scottish Borders LGBT Equality group complained that he was due to speak at a public hall, and the event was cancelled by Live Borders.

When they heard it had been rearranged at the Lighthouse Church in Dumfries instead, they contacted Dumfries and Galloway LGBT Plus, who then organised the protest.

Susan Hart, Chair of the Scottish Borders group, told ITV Border she was disappointed not to have barred Angus Buchan from Scotland on the whole.

We were delighted that he wasn't coming to the Borders and a bonus was that we thought we'd managed to keep him out of Scotland full stop.

So we were extremely disappointed that he'd been moved over to Dumfries and Galloway, but like I said we offered our support right away and informed them as soon as we knew and it is a shame but I think the demonstration is fantastic.

– Susan Hart, Chair of Scottish Borders LGBT Equality

We spend a lot of time building links with churches, with other organisations, and trying to create a happy, friendly, supportive and inclusive environment for LGBT Plus people.

And we, as an organisation, don't think it's correct that people come here and speak out against that.

– Jonathan Gallagher, Service Manager Dumfries and Galloway LGBT Plus
Angus Buchan at the Lighthouse Church in Dumfries. Credit: Lighthouse Church Dumfries

In a statement, the Lighthouse Church said they respect the LGBT community, but also value freedom of speech.

We respect the views of the LGBT community and although we believe different things and we hope that both communities can live peacefully and dignifiedly In a great country that allows freedom of speech, lifestyle and worship.

– Lighthouse Church Dumfries

Angus Buchan has declined ITV Border's request for an interview, but a message posted on his website called criticism of his UK tour "the most severe attack" he has experienced as a Christian.

I have come under the most severe attack and resistance I have ever experienced in my life since becoming a Christian...

I am accused of being a homophobe, and many other unsavoury things, but all I am doing, and still intend to do in Great Britain, is to preach the undiluted Word of God, “The Bible” in its entirety, not compromising one word. It is because I love people and do not want them to perish and go to a lost eternity...

I love homosexuals, and I love lesbians, but I cannot condone their way of living, their lifestyle, because it is contrary to the teaching of God’s Holy Word!

– Blog posted on Angus Buchan's website