Latifah Muhammad

Florida Church Refuses To Hold Gay Man’s Funeral


A church in Tampa, Fla. canceled a man’s funeral after learning that he was gay. The day before his funeral, the family of Julion Evans learned that the ceremony at the New Hope Baptist Missionary Church wasn’t happening.

The Tampa Bay Times reports:

Pastor T.W. Jenkins, who heads the Tampa church, canceled the Aug. 2 service after several members complained, according to Evans’ partner, Kendall Capers. They had seen his obituary in newspapers, which listed Capers as his husband.

Capers said the pastor told the family that to conduct a funeral for a gay man would be “blasphemous.”

“We can’t even have a dignified service like the next person could?” Capers said. “This is 2014, and we’re still going through this.”

Jenkins did not respond to several calls and visits from the Tampa Bay Times. No one answered the door at his Brandon home. A woman at the church business office said he was busy in meetings. Other church leaders listed in public records also declined to talk about the incident.

“Based on our preaching of the Scripture, we would have been in error to allow the service in our church,” Jenkins said in an interview, according to WFLA-TV. “I’m not trying to condemn anyone’s lifestyle, but at the same time I am a man of God, and I have to stand up for my principles.”

Jenkins has been the head pastor of the Tampa church since 1995, according to the church website. In March, he delivered the opening invocation at Mayor Bob Buckhorn’s annual state of the city address.

The church is described on its website as a “Christ centered” and “biblically based” place of worship. It offers ministries “open to visitors searching for a spirit-filled place to call home.”


Jenkins expressed regret giving them such short notice. The family held the ceremony at the funeral home that hosted Evans’ wake.

The 42-year-old was a native of Tampa. He died from amyloidosis, an incurable and rare disease that affects the organs. 

Capers, was Evans’ partner for over 15 years.


Photo: Facebook

Comment Comments: 4 Tags Tags: florida, gay man's funeral

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  • If you are gay you are gay if you represent the right way that’s what you do too. So there should not be a problem with someone standing up for what we all know is right. They stand up for the homosexual stuff entirely too much. Everyone is not going to agree nor be on board with supporting that lifestyle. No one cares about it only until u try to bring that to their house and in this case, that’s what you saw here. I support the pastors decision.

  • Otis Django

    People have freedom assembly, freedom of speech and freedom of Religion. Don’t like it, go to another Church.

  • dom

    We got people dying left and right and ya’ll want us to worry about somebody already dead. Gtfoh. Ain’t no woman, gays, etc helping our causes so oh well is what I say. I’m straight so let the gays handle their own business.

  • Guest

    This should be a day of victory and rejoicing for the poor, rejected and marginalized in society, I just hope more in Hollywood would do the same and take their own lives.

    You selfish,heartless animals, you wasye millions on drugs and other evil things, but you are not able to assist a young lady with $250.00 so that she could be in the graduating class of 2014

    May you rich people all burn in hell!!!!!!!!