Here's What Got Extremist Pastor Steven Anderson Banned from Ireland

Last week, Tempe pastor Steven Anderson became the first person ever to be banned from Ireland. The hate-spewing, Holocaust-denying preacher already has been banned from the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, South Africa, and Canada, among others, but here in Arizona, his strip-mall-based Faithful Word Baptist Church holds three meetings a week and claims to have 300 members.

Anderson's plans to preach to a congregation in Dublin on May 26 sparked immediate backlash, with over 14,000 people signing a petition to “prevent American hate-pastor Steven Anderson from preaching in Ireland.” On May 12, Ireland's minister for justice signed an exclusion order barring Anderson from entering the country. Here are some excerpts from Phoenix New Times articles that explain why the people of Ireland want to keep Anderson out:

1. He praised the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando for leaving "50 less pedophiles in this world."
Wacko Tempe preacher Steven Anderson never misses an opportunity to spew hate and homophobia, so it's hardly a surprise to find him capitalizing on the [June 2016] massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, where a gunman killed 49 and wounded 53 more...

Anderson, who in his sermons and online rants previously has called for the death of President Obama and the execution of all gays, took to YouTube ... to opine on what he called "the bright side" of the horrific event: that the victims, whom he called "50 sodomites," are no longer among the living.

"The good news is there are 50 less pedophiles in this world," Anderson, pastor of Tempe's Faithful Word Baptist Church, says in the video. "Because these homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts and pedophiles. That's who was [sic] the victim here — a bunch of just disgusting homosexuals at a gay bar."

2. He also hates Jewish people and has called the Holocaust a "hoax."
Anderson is all about bashing the Jews on YouTube, where he posts hate-filled sermons with such snappy titles as "The Jews and Their Lies," "Jews Are Anti-Christs," "Christ-Rejecting Jews Are Children of the Devil," "The Jews Are Our Enemies," and the ever-popular, "The Jews Killed Jesus."

The not-so-good pastor's current project Marching to Zion apparently will tackle similar themes and has him collaborating with conspiracy theory-loving filmmaker Paul Wittenberger, a favorite of moonhowler extraordinaire Alex Jones.

Sure, anti-Semites and their icky, self-made films are a dime a dozen on the Internet. But Anderson's drawn the attention of the Anti-Defamation League, in part by scoring the unwitting participation of four Phoenix area rabbis, one of whom is a Holocaust survivor.

3. He not only prayed for the death of President Obama, he also inspired one of his followers to show up at an Obama rally in Phoenix with a loaded AR-15.
The day before Christopher Broughton brought his loaded assault rifle to a demonstration outside where the President was speaking in downtown Phoenix [in 2009], Pastor Anderson was preaching hate for President Obama, and praying for the Chief Executive's death.

And when I say, "preaching hate," I don't mean that as a figure of speech.

"God hates Barack Obama," the preacher told his congregation. "I hate Barack Obama."

In a rambling, hour-plus sermon that knocks "sodomites," disses Pentecostal Christians, and offers up a birther fantasy of Obama playing baseball in Kenya as a child with a stick and a mango, Anderson talked about how Obama would be in town the next day, and that some of his parishioners might be attending, although he couldn't personally make it due to previous plans.

For Anderson, Obama cannot be "saved," and because Obama backs access to abortion for women, he deserves to die.

"You're gonna tell me that I'm supposed to pray for the socialist devil," asked Anderson, rhetorically, referring to Obama, "[this] murderer, infanticide, who wants to see young children, and he wants to see babies killed through abortion and partial birth — and all these other things — you're gonna tell me I'm supposed to pray for god to give him a good lunch tomorrow, while he's in Phoenix, Arizona. Nope. I'm not going to pray for his good. I'm going to pray that he dies and goes to hell. When I go to bed tonight, that's how I'm going to pray."

4. He called for the government to execute gay people and prayed for Caitlyn Jenner's heart to explode.
In 2010, Anderson told New Times that he thinks "the government should put homosexuals to death." He's also called gay people "sodomites who recruit through rape" and "recruit through molestation." And in a sermon entitled "6 Types of Prayer," he said he hopes that Caitlyn Jenner's heart explodes.

"I don't think I'm a hateful person — I'm a happy, positive person," Anderson tells New Times."I hate certain people."

At the top of Anderson's list of hate seems to be homosexuals.

After rambling off a passage from Leviticus, Anderson told us he thinks "the government should put [homosexuals] to death."

5. He said the victims of the Paris attacks deserved it for attending the Eagles of Death Metal concert.
In a shocking, hateful rant, an extremist Tempe pastor attacked the victims of the [November 2015] Paris attack, blaming them for their own senseless murders because they were "devil worshipers."

Pastor Steven Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe also denounced France as a “sinful nation” in a Sunday sermon and online video.

“When you go to a concert of death metal, somebody might get killed,” Anderson preached. “You know, you’re worshiping death, and then, all of a sudden, people start dying!”

Anderson was referencing the bloodiest of the Paris terrorists attack at the Le Bataclan Theatre, where the American band Eagles of Death Metal was performing. During the concert, 89 people were killed, including the band’s merchandise manager. In total, the coordinated ISIS attacks ... left 129 dead and 350 injured.

“Well, you love death so much, you bought the ticket, you love worshiping Satan! Well, let’s have some of Satan’s religion come in and shoot you!” Anderson continued yelling, while congregants can be heard murmuring their approval in the background. “I mean, that’s what these people should think about before they go into such a wicked concert!”
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Meg O'Connor was a staff writer for Phoenix New Times from April 2019 to April 2020.