VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – An anti-gay street preacher was apparently a no show at his West End event in Vancouver on Sunday.
Street preacher David Lynn is the founder of Christ’s Forgiveness Ministries and calls himself a radical evangelist. Lynn, who had promoted an event at Davie and Bute streets, makes a point of targetting LGBTQ+ communities and spreading messages of intolerance.
However, a counter rally had also been planned and protesters, including organizer Justin Philip Cheng, say Lynn never showed up.
Cheng says the counter rally had planned to drown out anti-LGBTQ messaging with their own messages.
“People should be supported to be free from harassment. To know they’re safe in public,” Cheng says. “I know some people can be very traumatized by his message. From what I think, he’s not willing to engage in any productive conversation.
“This is not just about one group or this group. It’s standing up for Vancouver as a progressive, welcoming city,” Cheng adds.
Lynn is most well known for aggressively preaching at Toronto’s Pride event in 2019, resulting in his arrest. At the time, he was charged with mischief and disturbing the peace but those charges were later dropped.
The focus is now shifting to a second event planned for Monday evening at Sunset Beach. Counter protesters with the Pink Block and the Disco Task Foce say they’ll be at the park at 6:00 p.m. to greet Lynn and his following.
They are warning people to follow COVID-19 safety regulations but say they want to be able to reflect the diversity of the West End.
This isn’t the first event Lynn’s efforts have been met with resistance. He was shouted down by protesters in Victoria on Saturday after planning a rally in that city. He plans to take his roadshow to Jasper, Banff, and Calgary over the next few days.
Lynn’s events come after an anti-gay street preacher was arrested and charged in Vancouver following a violent altercation earlier in August.
Dorre Love is accused of attacking Sportsnet 650’s Justin Morissette, who was attempting to stop him from spreading homophobic messages. Morissette is said to have taken Love’s microphone away while the preacher was in the West End on Aug. 22. Love has claimed he was acting in self-defence.
-With files from Vanessa Doban