Thursday, August 21, 2014
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'Duck Dynasty' dad preached about gays at Pottstown church

As the Duck Dynasty family was warning it might pull out of the hit A&E show after patriarch Phil Robertson was suspended for making anti-gay remarks in GQ, videos of him preaching similar thoughts at a Pottstown church have surfaced.

In the 2010 videos, Robertson was preaching at a Wild Game dinner at the Berean Bible Church. During the roughly hour-long talk, he weighed in on the immorality of gays, indicating they are experiencing God's wrath. He also spoke on a range of issues, including his famed duck calls, Terry Bradshaw as his backup quarterback in college, and that he doesn't believe in evolution.

No one at the Berean Bible Church, which was preparing this morning for its Nativity Scene, was available to comment. The videos were recorded before the Duck Dynasty show began airing.

Meanwhile, it was unclear if the show will continue on A&E.

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    “We have had a successful working relationship with A&E but, as a family, we cannot imagine the show going forward without our patriarch at the helm,” the Robertson family said in a statement posted on the duckcommander.com website. “We are in discussions with A&E to see what that means for the future of Duck Dynasty.”

    The family defends Robertson, saying he, “would never incite or encourage hate” and that his faith is constitutionally protected.

    The network announced Wednesday a "hiatus" for Robertson, 67, who disparaged gays in the January edition of GQ magazine. He also said that, growing up in Louisiana before the Civil Rights movement, he never saw mistreatment of blacks.

    In a statement, A&E said it was extremely disappointed to see Robertson's anti-gay remarks, which it said were based on his personal beliefs and do not reflect those of A&E Networks or the show. A&E Networks, a joint venture of The Walt Disney Co. and Hearst Corp., called itself a supporter of the lesbian and gay community.

    The Robertson clan continued: “We want you to know that first and foremost we are a family rooted in our faith in God and our belief that the Bible is His word. While some of Phil’s unfiltered comments to the reporter were coarse, his beliefs are grounded in the teachings of the Bible.

    “Phil is a Godly man who follows what the Bible says are the greatest commandments: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart’ and ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

    In the end, however, the Robertson’s indicate they could not continue the show without Phil.

    As the controversy continued, the videos posted by the Berean Bible Church of Pottstown, Montgomery County, began surfacing around the web - although the church already had included them on its YouTube channel.

    In the videos, Robertson did muse on a range of topics, including gays. But it's difficult to tell if he is speaking solely of gays in recorded diatribe, or if he was referring to anyone committing what he viewed as are immoral acts.

    "Women with women, men with men. They’ve committed indecent acts with each other. And they’ve received in themselves the (garbled) for their perversions," Robertson says, his voice rising. "They’re full of murder, envy, strife, hatred. They are insolent, arrogant God-haters."


    Contact Frank Kummer at 215-854-2329 or bmccrone@philly.com. Follow @frankkummer on Twitter.

    Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; BreakingNewsDesk@philly.com. Follow @phillynews on Twitter.

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