John M. Becker

New Film Hopes to Tell How Nate Phelps Escaped Westboro

Filed By John M. Becker | June 19, 2014 10:00 AM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Living
Tags: cults, escape from fundamentalism, Fred Phelps, Nathan Phelps, Westboro Baptist Church

nathan-phelps-rainbow-flag.jpgA new documentary project hopes to tell the story of Nathan Phelps -- the estranged son of infamous hate pastor Fred Phelps -- and his journey from Westboro Baptist Church member to outspoken LGBT ally.

From the project's Kickstarter page:

"Not My Father's Son" will chronicle Nate's story from the years of physical, emotional and mental abuse he suffered at the hands of his father from a young age through his journey toward healing to his subsequent and current fight for justice and equality for all people.

Statistics indicate that as many as one-third of children who are emotionally, mentally or physically abused go on to become abusers as well. Parents are the alleged perpetrators in 80 percent of reported child abuse cases, with the number of child abuse reports in the United States reaching an unprecedented 3.1 million in 2013. Of child abuse cases resulting in prosecution, a startling 43 percent of those charged cited various forms of religious teaching concerning the disciplining of children in their defense.

Nate's father Fred was the founder of the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas, prior to his death in 2014. The church is known worldwide for its stance against homosexuality, and is defined by its trademark slogan, "God Hates Fags." Nate's escape from the abusive and hateful environment in which he was raised coupled with his quest to break the cycle of abuse and hate for future generations create a poignant and powerful theme for the film.

Watch the trailer for Not My Father's Son, after the break.

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