Pastor defends teacher accused of anti-gay rant
UNION, N.J. (RNS) The pastor of a high school teacher who has been
vilified for an anti-gay tirade on Facebook came to the woman's defense,
calling her a "very loving person" who should not be fired for
expressing her religious beliefs.
The Rev. Milton B. Hobbs, pastor of New Covenant Fellowship in
Clark, N.J., said special education teacher Viki Knox is not homophobic
and that her comments, when taken in the context of the Bible, were not
Knox, 49, an ordained minister at the church and a faculty adviser
for a student Bible study group, wrote on her Facebook page that
homosexuality was a "perverted spirit" and a "sin" that "breeds like
"No one is pointing to homosexuality as the ultimate sin. We all
have sinned," her pastor said. "It's not saying that people who are gay
sin any more or less than anyone else. But to say that the Bible doesn't
say it's a sin would be untrue. It does say that."
Hobbs said his greater concern is the possibility Knox will be
disciplined for expressing an opinion on a personal Web page, noting she
did not incite violence or advocate harm.
"Any Christian who makes a stand that's unpopular can expect to be
persecuted. That's in the Bible, too," Hobbs said. "But no American
should expect to be prosecuted for exercising free speech. At what point
does that stop?"
Union schools Superintendent Patrick Martin said the district is
investigating and would take "all appropriate action" after an
investigation. "Nothing has been determined to be right or wrong yet,"