Vancouver mayor asks Christian event to drop contentious pastor

Source: The Globe and Mail

BY ANDREA WOO

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson has asked the organizers of a coming Christian festival to consider dropping headline speaker Rev. Franklin Graham, an evangelical pastor who has made controversial statements about Muslims, people of colour, and gays and lesbians.

Mr. Robertson, Councillor Tim Stevenson and several other city staff members met with Festival of Hope organizers at City Hall on Wednesday. They outlined their concerns over Mr. Graham, the son of revered evangelist Billy Graham, and suggested the festival consider replacing him for the free event, which is expected to draw thousands to Rogers Arena on March 3-5.

However, the festival is not expected to budge.

The mayor is concerned about the “extraordinarily derogative” comments the pastor has made, especially after the attack on a Quebec City mosque last month that left six men dead and 19 others injured, Mr. Stevenson said.

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