The idea of using a visit from Westboro Baptist Church to raise money is hardly new, but leave it to the “perverts of Dallas” to come up with possibly the cleverest marketing pitch yet for a Phelps clan counterprotest fundraiser.

Westboro Baptist is scheduled to picket Resource Center Dallas — and specifically the gay-affirming Jewish congregation that meets there — next Friday, July 9. In response, the Resource Center has launched “Hell Freezes Over,” a campaign to raise money for a new ice machine that will serve the agency’s hot meals program for low-income people with HIV/AIDS.

RCD explains in a press release that their ice machine broke a few months ago, and they’ve been relying on Cathedral of Hope and Caven Enterprises to provide ice since then, but this is not a long-term solution.

The ice machine will cost more than $3,000, and people are asked to pledge a certain amount — such as 50 cents or a dollar — for every minute the Phelps clan pickets. RCD officials acknowledge that WBC sometimes calls off pickets when it learns they’re being used as fundraisers, but after all, RCD still needs an ice machine. To donate, go to and click on the “Hell Freezes Over” banner.

And if you need a little more incentive to give, here’s a snippet from the WBC website:

WBC will picket Congregation Beth el Binah at the John Thomas Gay and Lesbian Center of Dallas to remind them that the Lord, who destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for being a bunch of filthy fags, still reigns sovereign. How much worse will it be for this generation of sodomites, having had that example of the Lord’s wrath poured out? Luke 10:10 But into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you not, go your ways out into the streets of the same, and say, 11 Even the very dust of your city, which cleaveth on us, we do wipe off against you: notwithstanding be ye sure of this, that the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. 12 But I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city. The perverts of Dallas have a history of rejecting the true Gospel preaching of WBC. They will soon see a repeat of the Lord’s wrath poured out as it was on Sodom first hand.

WBC also plans several other pickets in Dallas next week, and it looks like a Facebook page has been set up to organize counterprotests. Read RCD’s “Hell Freezes Over” press release after the jump.

July 2, 2010

“Hell Freezes Over:” Westboro Baptist Church protest at Resource Center Dallas July 9 to become fundraiser for new ice machine

Dallas — Resource Center Dallas is turning a scheduled protest the evening of July 9 (Friday) by members of the Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church into a fundraiser to buy the Center a new ice machine. The church is known for its protests at military funerals, Jewish and Catholic places of worship, and organizations supporting the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.

“Our ice machine broke several months ago. We’ve had to get ice for our weekday hot meals program from our partners at Caven Enterprises and Cathedral of Hope, but it’s not a long-term solution,” said Bret Camp, associate executive director for health and medical services at the Center. “Replacing it is an unbudgeted capital expense in challenging economic times. Community groups and individuals have offered to help defray the expenses, but it will cost over $3000 to replace the ice machine with an energy-efficient, higher-capacity model.”

The Center is asking the North Texas community to donate an amount for each minute the protestors plan to picket both the Center and Beth El Binah, a mainstream Reform Jewish congregation with a longtime LGBT outreach that meets at the Center. For example, at a dollar a minute, the scheduled 30-minute protest from 6:15-6:45 pm on July 9 would lead to a $30 donation, or a 50 cent a minute commitment would lead to a $15 donation. Donations would first go to buying a new ice machine, with any money above and beyond that to the Center’s general operating funds.

“The protestors have been known to abandon their protests when they’re turned into a fundraiser,” Camp added. “Whether the church shows up or not, this is a way for the North Texas community to stand with us against hate and help us with a timely need.”

Church members are also planning protests at several other North Texas sites, including the Holocaust Museum in the Dallas West End, the Texas Jewish Post and Cathedral Guadalupe.

Since the early 1990’s, the Center’s hot meals program serves a nutritious lunch to more than 100 HIV-positive clients Monday through Friday. For more information or to donate, go to the Center’s website,, and look for the banner ad “Hell Freezes Over—Donate to Counter-Protest Against Hate.”