Reverend Willie Wilson, pastor of Washington’s African-centered Union Temple Church and national executive director of the Million More March, set off a firestorm in Metro Washington when he denounced lesbianism in very graphic language. During a sermon, he warned that lesbianism was about “to take over our community,” and said that the reason a lot of women are becoming lesbians is that a “lot of the sisters [are] making more money than brothers.”
“To even think because some women may be making more money than men is the reason that they are becoming lesbians is absurd,” commented Reverend Kwabena Rainey Cheeks, whose sermonette, Understanding the Radical Inclusivenes of Jesus appears on Port of Harlem’s web site. “This language and behavior from Reverend. Wilson and his son represent internalized oppression and are the most dangerous kind and we must free ourselves from it,” continued Checks, who pastors Inner Light Ministries in Washington, D.C.
Wilson shared his thoughts from the pulpit and they came after leaders of the march announced that the march would welcome Gays and women. (See Snippets coverage of the announcement.) The Washington Blade (click here to read and hear the text of Wilson's sermon), the city’s Gay newspaper, first reported the sermon followed by the Washington Post and several other local television and radio newscasts.
While many of the reports gave Wilson unfavorable coverage, Checks is more forgiving. He said, “We all make mistakes. Let us learn from this one. We do not have the time or luxury to let anything divide us as a people.”