Protesters say Riverview pastor is practicing gay conversion therapy

Image 1 of 4

Outrage tonight outside a Downriver church where the pastor is accused of offering gay conversion therapy trying to make gay people straight. 

A large group of protestors showed up outside a Downriver church to stand against a controversial practice they believe the church is engaging in.

The signs being held read "You're not a pervert don't convert" and "Salvation isn't binary" as hundreds came to stand against conversion therapy which they believe is not only antiquated, but harmful.

The controversial practice uses prayer and counseling in an attempt to change someone's sexual orientation or gender identity.

"This is not right, we should be able to be who we are in our everyday life and who we were born to be," said protester Anton Sims.

It is the reason the protesters were outside Riverview's Metro City Church Thursday night.

A post from the church's Facebook page was later taken down offering classes to girls 12-16 years’ old that are "struggling with the thoughts that they are trans - bi - gay - or other."

Protestors say that is nothing but conversion therapy in sheep's clothing. A variation on "pray away the gay."

"The pastor is denying it and presenting it as conversation," said Brianna Dee Kingsley. "But the basic premise of what they are doing is trying to change LGBTQIA children and make them straight. That practice is banned in nine states in this country."

Another sign, another big part or the draw, "I stand with Seth."
"I'm also trans," said Quinn Gillies. "I feel like if someone feels like they something they should be able to feel comfortable with their body and themselves."

Seth too is a transgender man, meaning he was born biologically female and has transitioned to being a young man. He says leaders at Metro City tried to pray a demon out of him because he was transgender.

"They should just give it up," said Seth Tooley. "Because we're going to keep preaching about it."

Before protestors showed up outside the church, inside Metro City, lead pastor Jeremy Schossau defended the classes the church is offering.

"We believe sexuality is a choice," he said in a video. "We believe that you can be what you want to be and do what you want to do."

As for the church today they say they're moving the classes to an undisclosed location and say the protest is about nothing.