The controversial Westboro Baptist Church issued a press release Wednesday stating that it intended to protest at the funeral of Elizabeth Edwards to be held in Raleigh, NC.
The group has become known worldwide for its ultra-conservative stance against issues such as homosexuality and the War in Iraq. Their infamous protests at the funerals of deceased soldiers has drawn national criticism.
In the statement released, the church condemned the Edwards family. Elizabeth was the estranged wife of former presidential hopeful and NC Senator John Edwards. She had taken a supportive stance in her life on the issues of gay marriage and medical coverage for abortions, both of which Westboro Baptist Church is strongly against.
Jon Phelps is the pastor of Westboro Baptist Church and there are about 50 members at their home base of Topeka, Kansas. They often travel to other locations and picket at funerals, including those of soldier killed in the war.
In their press release against the Edwards family, the church referred to John as faithless and whorish. They stated that Elizabeth spewed blasphemy.
Elizabeth had battled cancer off and on for many years. After a period of remission, the cancer recurred and she sought treatment. After ending treatment the mother and author died at her home surrounded by her family. She was 61 years old.