Outrage as pastor tells students gay people are 'as bad as Hitler'
Students at a school in Kuilsriver were apparently told gay people were akin to murderers and paedophiles and that young people who had sex before marriage were prostitutes.
The comments came from pastor Pickard Henn who had initially been invited to De Kuilen High last Wednesday as a guest speaker for an event hosted by Christian organisation Christellike Studente Vereeniging (CSV).
A source told Cape Talk that many children were in tears after his speech.
Despite the outrage following his appearance, Henn returned to the school on Friday for the regular CSV assembly.
The source told Cape Talk that while attendance is usually voluntary, matric students were 'forced' to attend and that the pastor had been touted as a 'motivational speaker'.
During this second visit, he reportedly told learners after the assembly that; gay people were 'as bad as Hitler', babies are all born sinners and that sangomas were 'of the devil'.
However, responding to the accusations on Cape Talk's Kieno Kammies show on Tuesday Henn denied that his Friday 'service' had made any reference to LGBT people.
When I went to the school on the Friday morning there was none of that stuff in the service. Nothing was said about gay people on the Friday morning. I have it all on recording.Pickard Henn, Pastor
Before I went into that school, I asked the teacher if I can preach the full gospel here because if not I'll get in my car and go home. I will not preach a half gospel.Pickard Henn, Pastor
Listen to Pickard Henn's response below:
The school principal has subsequently called on the Metro East Education District to offer counselling to affected learners.
The Western Cape Education Department's Bronagh Hammond joined Breakfast with Kieno Kammies on Tuesday to discuss the matter:
While the school doesn't adopt a complete Christian ethos or a complete Muslim ethos, we do not want to stop learners from expressing their religious freedoms and rights, so they can have these clubs.Bronagh Hammond, Director of Communications - Western Cape Education Department
We don't want to shut down engagements like this, however, in this instance, of course, we want to shut down anyone that would come into our school and spew such vitriol.Bronagh Hammond, Director of Communications - Western Cape Education Department
We're just hoping that the school uses this as an opportunity to showcase what intolerance can do and what hatred can come out of intolerance.Bronagh Hammond, Director of Communications - Western Cape Education Department
Listen to the full interview below: