I’ll try to avoid getting too wordy, but this particular topic is one that I feel more strongly about than I thought I would, and it’s more than what twitter can contain. I’ll spare most of the overall backstory regarding the Westboro Baptist Church – that’s what Wikipedia is for. The topic in hand is the recent departures of both Megan Phelps and Grace Phelps from the church.
As mentioned by Jeff Chu in his article “Damsel, Arise: A Westboro Scion Leaves Her Church“, Megan stepped away from Westboro Baptist Church back in November 2012. Only within the past few days has the word really come out and the public eye has been made privy to this event. Megan’s twitter account had been silent since October 30th, 2012. She broke her silence yesterday with a tweet simply stating “Hi.” and a link to her latest blog, discussing her decision to leave WBC.
Still young at only 27 years old, Megan Phelps played a major part in the presence and communication of WBC, arguably being the most social media savvy of the congregation. The Kansas City star had gone so far as to call Megan “the future leader” of the church. How her departure will ultimately affect WBC is anyone’s guess – their (attempted) presence was still known regarding their attempts at picketing the Sandy Hook Elementary School funerals.
Let’s stop and think about this for a moment. Picture yourself having a completely provided life. Everything you could want and need, readily available for you. A free ride, essentially. All you’d have to do is abide by the beliefs and demands of your family. For nearly 27 years, this is what Megan had, along with 19 year old Grace.
They’ve now walked away from that. Now excommunicated by their family for “turning their backs” on them, these two are starting anew. From scratch. I can only imagine the nervousness, anxiety, and even fear of doing such a thing. Bravery is an understatement to describe their choice. They need lots of love, support, and understanding. I said it yesterday on twitter, and I’ll say it again here. All I really want to do is to give both Megan and Grace a big hug, and buy them a coffee or something. Let them know that they’re appreciated, and have a newfound respect by many that was likely not there under the umbrella of WBC.
The only time it’s too late to repent is after you’re already dead and in the grave. Megan and Grace are both alive and well, have closed a long chapter in a series of longer chapters in their young lives, and are just now beginning to write newer and brighter chapters. As the top song from the Aladdin soundtrack noted, they have “A whole new world. A new fantastic point of view.”.