Holy Toledo! Ohio Churches in Ad Battle Over God and Gays

Back and forth on billboards

OMG, another blasphemous billboard controversy in Ohio! Back in April, the Central United Methodist Church of Toledo put up a message that read, "Being gay is a gift from God." Another local house of worship, the Church on Strayer, last week shot back with nine billboards proclaiming, "Being gay is NOT a gift from God. Forgiveness, love, & eternal life are." The word "not" is rendered in bold-red all caps, lest anyone misunderstand. Says Strayer Rev. Tony Scott, "I love everyone. There's nothing in that billboard about hate." I'm guessing he'd put "everyone" and "nothing" in red if that quote ever makes it into billboard form. Central UMC's Lynn Brown says, "People have the right to express their faith the way they see fit—and I think it helps the community to know where the churches stand." The congregation recently debuted a new billboard that reads, "Creating a space for all God's children regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity." Will the rival church respond? Keep watching the skies above I-75 for a sign.

@DaveGian davegia@hotmail.com David Gianatasio is a longtime contributor to Adweek, where he has been a writer and editor for two decades. Previously serving as Adweek's New England bureau chief and web editor, he remains based in Boston.
Publish date: September 27, 2011 https://dev.adweek.com/creativity/holy-toledo-ohio-churches-ad-battle-over-god-and-gays-135266/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT