Family group flies banner over 'Gay Days' at Disney

by Anthony Gunde, posted Friday, June 08, 2001 (17 years ago)

ORLANDO, Fla. (BP)--As homosexuals celebrated "Gay Days" June 3 in Orlando, Fla., a pro-family group from Virginia flew banners over Disney World and Universal Studios theme parks urging homosexuals to leave their lifestyle.

Homosexuals need to embrace the teachings of Jesus Christ to heal "their broken lives," said banners flown by the Family Policy Network.

Thousands gathered in Orlando for the annual "Gay Days" celebration over the weekend.

Walt Disney World -- long considered an ally by the homosexual community -- jointly hosted the event with Universal Studios from May 29-June 3. The annual weeklong event included pool and circuit parties, a homosexual vendor fair and "Gay Day" at Disney.

"It's sad to see people celebrate such a destructive way of life," Joe Glover, president of the Family Policy Network, told CNSNews.com. "The people who do this are merely trying to fill a God-sized void in their lives that can only be filled by Jesus Christ."

An FPN airplane banner read, "Jesus Christ: Hope for homosexuals.com," drawn from the organization's hopeforhomosexuals.com website aimed at converting homosexuals

The site features testimonies from former homosexuals, God's plan for salvation and articles that warn of the dangers of leading a homosexual lifestyle.

FPN's objective does not criticize individuals, but rather the behavior, Glover said. "We want to let the people know there is hope and healing through Jesus. We do not oppose the individuals, but the practices that destroy their lives.

"We are sending a message to our culture. Statistics show that more young men are dying because of same-sex relationships than heterosexuals, and we do not want practices that would take our young men early to their graves," Glover said.

In the wake of the FPN demonstration June 3, the organization has received reactions ranging from pro-family support to attacks by homosexuals and their allies, Glover said.

"We had a lot of people thanking us for what we stand for, but there have also been some critics. But the critics will always be there," Glover said.

A group that promoted the event said FPN actions are not new and would not undermine their efforts to promote same-sex lifestyles.

"This was the third year they have been doing that, it's nothing new," said Lanie Brito, director of operations for the Gays-Lesbian-Bisexual Community Center.

Disney has refused to yield to conservatives demanding the denunciation of the event, which draws an estimated 60,000 people to the Magic Kingdom on the first Saturday of June. Disney theme parks are open to everyone, spokesperson Rena Callahan said.

Universal Studios joined Disney for the first time this year. They created the first official Gay Day at Islands of Adventure on June 3.

Gay Days also received permission to include a Universal coupon voucher in the program and bought space at the vendor fair called Savoir Fair.

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Gunde is a correspondent with CNSNews.com. Used by permission.

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