The Coronation Street float at Manchester Pride August 2016
This photograph was taken from the location of the Christian witness



On Monday April 3rd 2017 the ITV broadcast a programme on hate crime presented by Jeremy Kyle. 

During the programme Pastor Peter Simpson of Penn Free Methodist Church in Buckinghamshire was filmed debating with Mr Kyle at the Manchester Pride parade in August 2016. Pastor Simpson was present at the parade with a group of other Christians preaching the gospel and pointing out the Bible’s teaching on the sinfulness of homosexuality. 

At the time of the exchange with Jeremy Kyle Pastor Simpson did not know who Mr Kyle was or that he was filming for a TV programme about hate crime. Having seen the clip of their debate for the first time on the Kyle Files programme on the Monday when it was aired, Pastor Simpson has issued the following statement.

“Mr Kyle introduces the part of the programme involving myself with the words, ‘Appalled by some of their messages, I decided to confront them’ (i.e. the Christians who were protesting). So from the outset Mr Kyle paints the Christian witness at the parade in a negative light, even before he has spoken to us. This is not impartial investigative journalism, but a blatant expression of a personal opinion.

Furthermore, the very fact that a group of Christians holding up banners and preaching about the Biblical teaching on homosexuality is deemed to be relevant to a programme on the subject of hate crime is in itself gratuitously insulting, because it is assuming that there is an automatic connection between orthodox Christian doctrine and malicious physical and verbal attacks upon homosexual people. This is an entirely unwarranted connection and is an assault upon the integrity of all the Christians in the protest group at the Pride parade. 

Our motivation for being at Manchester Pride was to endeavour to help both homosexual people and their many supporters by drawing them away from error and towards clear Biblical teaching. One of our posters on display read, “It is an act of compassion to warn unbelievers about the seriousness of sin and the need for repentance”. Surely, in the interests of showing both sides of a dispute, high class investigative journalism would have found this out and reported on our expressed  motivation of compassion.

Mr Kyle said to me, with a homosexual gentleman standing alongside him, ‘This man was a victim of a homosexual hate crime because of people like you … You are inciting homophobic hate crime’. This is a personal slander devoid of any factual basis. My presence at the parade as an ordained Christian pastor was to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to help people with its life-transforming message. 

The assumption that to make known the Bible’s plain teaching about the sinfulness of homosexuality is synonymous with hate crime is crude and utterly unjustified. The Christian witness at Manchester Pride was arranged beforehand with the Police and was carried out under the supervision of their liaison officers. If we Christians had been guilty of inciting hate crime, as Mr Kyle plainly stated, we would have been arrested, but this did not happen. Therefore, the ITV programme is claiming that they know better than the Police.

In respect of our Christian protest the Kyle Files programme did not engage in objective reporting, and did not show even a modicum of respect for longstanding Christian moral teaching, but engaged instead in politically correct grandstanding and a slanderous assault on the integrity of the Christian protestors.  

Mr Kyle ended the programme with the words, “We must learn to tolerate and respect each other, whatever our beliefs and backgrounds”. It appears that both he and the ITV do not extend that principle to those who adhere to the Biblical faith which is the foundation of our nation’s constitution”. 

End of Pastor Simpson’s statement.  

The programme can be viewed at the following link :

The section involving Pastor Simpson commences at 17 minutes into the programme.