LGBT group seeks to buy building that houses anti-gay church

An LGBT group is seeking to buy a building that houses an infamous anti-gay church.

- The ATLAH Worldwide Missionary Church in Harlem is notorious for its homophobic sermons. It may soon be purchased by an LGBT homeless shelter.

"Rev. Manning has certanly become fixated on hating LGBT people and trying to use the bible to justify that," Carl Siciliano, the founder of the Ali Forney Center says.

The building housing the church is set to be auctioned for unpaid bills.

The Ali Forney Center is the largest organization in the country working to help homeless LGBT youth.

"When the news broke that the building was foreclosed and put up for auction, we launched the Harlem No Hate campaign and in less than two weeks we were able to raise $200,000 towards our efforts to win the building at auction," Siciliano says.

Pastor James David Manning has been at odds with the LGBT community in Harlem for years, regularly putting up anti-gay signs outside his church and preaching homophobic sermons for his congregation.

Despite claims by many that his speech is hateful and incendiary, Atlahs signs and teachings are supported by the 1st Amendment.

On site last year read:  “Obama is a Muslim. Muslims hate F*gs. They throw F*gs off buildings. The bible says throw them off too,” which caused a huge gay and lesbian community outcry.

They held a protest outside the church last year.  “Stop the hate now!” protestors shouted.

“I’m just expressing religious freedom, why don’t they just leave me alone? Unless they think I’m a threat to their existence, which I am,” Manning said.

Siciliano says his group has to turn away 200 people a night from their shelter due to a lack of space.  The new building would help eliminate that problem, he says.

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