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Talon Marks

Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

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Anti-LGBTQ church bombed in El Monte

The First Works Baptist Church was bombed the morning of Jan. 23, after continuous hate speech from Paster Bruce Mejia. The FBI is still looking for the attackers. Photo credit: FBI Los Angeles

First Works Baptist Church in El Monte was bombed in the early morning of Jan. 23. The church has become the target of LGBTQ protests because of the preachings of Pastor Bruce Mejia.

The FBI investigation into the explosion is ongoing.

Laura Eimiller, the spokeswoman for the FBI in Los Angeles, commented on the attack.

“The incident took place at about 1 a.m. Saturday,” said Eimiller. “An explosive device was set off, and we spent the morning processing the scene with bomb technicians and our evidence response team.”

“No arrests have been made at this time. We are asking anyone with information to contact the FBI at (310) 477 6565.”

In addition to the explosion, the outside of the church was vandalized with graffiti.

Pastor Mejia’s preachings have become highly controversial to the El Monte community. His sermons include hate speech against LGBTQ people.

“God views them as rapists and child molesters,” Mejia said in one sermon.

“The whole ‘if he’s gay he is born that way, and he only likes guys’ is wrong. He is a dog who will go both ways,” Meja said in the documentary The Sodomite Deception. “It’s time to rip-some-face. It’s time to call a f*****t (homophobic slur) a f*****t, a transvestite, a disgusting dog, call it like it is.”

In an interview with FOX 11 news, Parishioner Ulysses Fernandez of the church believes the government should execute people in the LGBTQ community.

“It’s not hateful. That’s what God says,” Fernandez said.

Due to the church’s message, the Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled the First Works Baptist Church a “hate group.”

A protest in defense of LGBTQ people was set to happen on Jan. 24, but due to the explosion, it was canceled.

Protesters have used the #keepelmontefriendly to spread awareness about the church’s message.

The group released a statement on Instagram saying, “Our movement was intended to bring light and awareness to the hateful rhetoric taught by this group. We would never promote, encourage or condone any violence or acts of harm.”

El Monte resident, Deana Sanchez, commented on the church to FOX 11 news.

“I am completely disgusted that the city has allowed these people to continue to say their hate speech,” Sanchez said.

El Monte Police Chief stated that their speech is not criminal until they directly threaten someone or insight violence.

Pastor Mejia has also preached for husbands to keep their wives from working.

“Much of the adultery that happens comes from when women are in the workplace. Why? Because women are weak, it’s a fact,” said Mejia. “That is why my daughter will never work a secular job.”

Mejia has also preached that Disney Queen Elsa from Frozen is a whore.

Pastor Mejia did not respond to requests for a comment.

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About the Contributor
Vincent Medina
Vincent Medina, Managing Editor
Vincent Medina is the managing editor of Cerritos College Talon Marks Newspaper. He plans to receive his Associates Degree for Transfer at the end of Fall ‘21 semester. Vincent plans to pursue political journalism, and his goal is to become a political correspondent.
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Anti-LGBTQ church bombed in El Monte