Accessibility/Mobile Features
Skip Navigation
Skip to Content
Editorial News
Classified Sites

The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Alberta Tory leadership hopeful apologizes for taking part in March for Jesus

CALGARY - Alberta Tory leadership hopeful Ric McIver has apologized for his participation in a parade held by a group with anti-gay sentiments, but he doesn't plan to pull out of the race to be the province's next premier.

The member of the legislature from Calgary was criticized by his own party for taking part in last weekend's March for Jesus organized by the Street Church, which on its website condemns gay people as the minions of Satan.

McIver says he became involved with the group when he was a city alderman and the Street Church would hold barbecues for the homeless.

"The basis of the relationship was a friendly ... hello as people were being fed in front of city hall," he said Thursday at a media availability. "That led to accepting an invitation to attend the March for Jesus."

McIver said he blames himself for not doing his homework.

"I didn't check the website. I'm angry. Anybody who's angry, I agree with them. Nasty, mean-spirited stuff on this website. There's no excuse for."

He said he doesn’t believe in or support the Street Church anymore and his relationship with it is over. He wants the group to remove his name and photos from its website.

He’s asking for forgiveness from the public and admits he made “a big mistake."

McIver plans to continue his leadership run against former federal cabinet minister Jim Prentice and fellow Alberta legislature member Thomas Lukaszuk.

He said his situation is different than the one a Wildrose party candidate faced during the 2012 election campaign. Allan Hunsperger warned gays to abandon their homosexuality or face eternity suffering in hell's "lake of fire.''

Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith refused to cut Hunsperger loose and some analysts suggest it was a turning point for the party, which had been polling strongly, but failed to win the election. The party has since reiterated that it believes in equality for all.

"There were negative things said before the last election and there were officials that did not argue with those comments," McIver said. "This is much different because I'm saying the opposite. I'm saying those comments are ugly. They're abhorrent. I don't support any of them."

In Edmonton, Premier Dave Hancock said while politicians can be overwhelmed by the people they meet and the people they get their picture taken with, "you do have to some work to ensure that you're not engaging in events that could be associated with beliefs that are not your beliefs."

Jim McCormick, Progressive Conservative party president, said earlier this week that closed-mindedness or intolerance have no place in the party and its members are expected to follow its statement of principles.

McIver had originally responded on his Facebook page, where he said he was at the parade to celebrate his Roman Catholic faith and had attended the march for the last four years.

He said he also attends events with Sikhs, Muslims, Hindus and Jews and deplores discrimination against all groups and individuals.

— With files from CHQR

  • Rate this Rate This Star Icon
  • This article has not yet been rated.
  • We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high. If you thought it was well written, do the same. If it doesn’t meet your standards, mark it accordingly.

    You can also register and/or login to the site and join the conversation by leaving a comment.

    Rate it yourself by rolling over the stars and clicking when you reach your desired rating. We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high.

Sort by: Newest to Oldest | Oldest to Newest | Most Popular 0 Commentscomment icon

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is register and/or login and you can join the conversation and give your feedback.

There are no comments at the moment. Be the first to post a comment below.

Post Your Commentcomment icon

  • You have characters left

The Brandon Sun does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. Comments are moderated before publication. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.


Make text: Larger | Smaller

Brandon Sun Business Directory
The First World War at 100
Why Not Minot?
Welcome to Winnipeg

Social Media