A California pastor is warning about a "frontal assault" against Christianity in the wake of a planning commission's overwhelming approval of a proposed mosque.
A 25,000-square-foot mosque to be built in Temecula Valley has gained unanimous support from the local planning commission, despite concerns from citizens and critics who say the facility may be a safe-haven for terrorists. William Rench, pastor of neighboring Calvary Baptist Church in Temecula Valley, feels his congregation's attempts to voice their opposition to the planning commission were futile.
"We learned during the course of the meeting that they already had made their decision to approve it, regardless of what the response was going to be from the community," Rench reports. "They had already printed in their record that they had approved it, even before the date of the hearing."
Although the mosque's imam has denied violence, the Baptist pastor explains that his public stance against the project has led some Muslims to label him as "hateful." The mosque, which will be built next door to Calvary Baptist Church, has created a stir among the church body.
"Our congregation remains concerned about the close proximity of a mosque to a facility like ours," Rench shares. "And now we've learned that they're going to not only have their Friday services, but they're going to have calls to prayer during the week...they're going to be there in the [early] mornings...and evenings [for] prayer times, [and] they're going to be having meetings all day Sunday. They're really planning on a frontal assault...with the use of their facility."
A local group has appealed to the city council. Meanwhile, Calvary Baptist Church members plan to continue voicing their concerns.