Via Youtube

WATCH: Elderly Christian preacher kicked, manhandled & arrested by London police 

A peaceful 75-year-old Christian preacher was roughed up and arrested by London police for reading Bible verses about there being only two genders, which some onlookers called “hate speech.”

Pastor John Sherwood, a minister at a north London church, was preaching the Christian gospel in Boris Johnson’s home constituency with a colleague, Peter Simpson.

According to Simpson’s account, speaking to The Conservative Woman newspaper, Sherwood was reading a verse from Genesis 1, “declaring that God’s design in creating mankind was to set human beings in families, headed by a father and a mother”.

Additionally, he reportedly commented on “the distinction within mankind of just two genders, male and female, made in the image of God, constitutes the essence of God’s created order”.

Police officers arrived shortly after, and informed Sherwood that three separate complaints had been made about his preaching, which was dubbed “homophobic”, specifically objecting to the assertion that there are only two genders.

“Pastor Sherwood respectfully told the police that he had freedom of speech and had no intention of desisting from preaching because of the complaints,” recalled Simpson.

“People are free to walk past and ignore him if they do not like what he is saying. He explained to the officers that his previous comments about families needing a father and mother were made in the context of the divine command to ‘be fruitful and multiply’ (Genesis 1:28). It is a statement of the obvious that two men or two women cannot reproduce.”

Reportedly, one passerby deemed that these statements were “homophobic hate speech”, and officers demanded that Sherwood leave the area, which he refused.

Video footage, which was shared online by the group Christian Concern, shows the elderly man Sherwood dragged off the ladder and roughed up by police officers before being arrested, supposedly on suspicion of an offence under Section 5 of the Public Order Act.

In the video, members of the public can be heard expressing their anger at the police’s conduct.

“That’s the Pastor of my Church. He spent 24 hrs in custody. This shouldn’t be happening in the UK,” commented one social media user to the viral footage according to Foxhole News.

According to Simpson, the pastor was driven to a police detention centre near Heathrow Airport, where he was kept overnight. Sherwood was not released until noon the next day.

The elderly man’s solicitor reportedly described the attitude of officers during the formal interview procedure as very unpleasant.

Though he has been released, he is reportedly “under investigation.”

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