German Baptist Church wants death penalty for gay people


Central Europe


Anselm Urban during a sermon. Photo Weg zum Himmel

The German Baptist Church in Pforzheim has been the centre of controversy since it was discovered that they believe that gay people deserve the death penalty. Other churches distance themselves from the statements and call for criminal charges.

“We believe that homosexuality is a sin and a shame that God punishes with the death penalty”, the website of the Baptists in Pforzheim reads. The believers base this view on several Bible texts, such as Leviticus 20,13, Romans 1,31, 2 Peter 2,6, and Jude 7.

In a letter to Pforzheimer Zeitung, pastor Anselm Urban explains that Leviticus clearly says that men who lie together should be put to death. He points out that the illness of AIDS proves that God condemns gay people, as it is “almost exclusively transmitted by sodomites.” According to the Baptist pastor, introducing the death penalty for homosexual people would be “the most effective way to eradicate AIDS” as well. The state is responsible for enforcing the death penalty for homosexual people, Urban argues.


The bold statements from the Pforzheim Baptist Church have led to much consternation and outrage in Germany. Other Christians and church representatives were quick to distance themselves from the Church in Pforzheim.

The Protestant state bishop from Baden, Heike Springhart said that “such inciting and discriminatory statements violate human dignity.” That is reported by Stuttgarter Zeitung. According to Springhart, the statements that incite and motivate violence contradict the message of the Bible.

Also, the Baptist Federation of Protestant Free Churches in Germany distanced itself from Pforzheim. On Twitter, it stated that “the sect in Pforzheim is not related to the Federation of Protestant Free Churches. The demand for the death penalty for homosexuals is completely absurd and extremely inhuman. We condemn them in the strongest terms.”

Protestant church leader Christiane Quicke has even called upon the public prosecutor's office to investigate the Baptist Church in Pforzheim, Katholisch.de reports. She has asked the prosecutor to check the community because of “queer hostile and anti-Semitic hate speech.



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