Pride versus prayer at Museum of Science and History on Saturday

Protesters against Pride celebration prayed, rallied against event

LGBTQ Pride Month is being celebrated with events throughout the month across the nation, including here in Jacksonville. Saturday kicked of the Museum of History and Science's 4th annual Pride Celebration day Downtown.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Nearly two dozen protesters met outside The Museum of Science and History in Jacksonville Saturday morning to speak out against the fourth annual Pride celebration day downtown.

"We are standing out here in a loving, peaceful way to glorify God and deliver his message to these people, said Blake Harper.

The demonstrators began hand in hand with a prayer then held up signs against the Pride celebration.

"This is a 'protect our children and family rally and family march and prayer rally,'" said Raymond Johnson, president and founder of Biblical Concept Ministries.

Protesters gathered outside as MOSH kicked off its fourth Pride celebration day with LGBTQ organizations, resources and drag performances. Those attending the event also spoke out.

"We have community support, the LGBTQ community has community support and even though there are folks in the community who want to protest or stand against (us) or say bad things about our part of the community, there are more who are willing to stand with us and support us," said Tina Vaughn-Wardle, producer of the coming out monologue. 

Pride Celebration Day is in partnership with JASMYN, LGBT UNF Resource Center, River City Pride and the Women's Center of Jacksonville, with activities planned throughout the day.

"We do this event to make sure everyone knows that everyone is welcome no matter what. It’s a way for us to celebrate the community, to make everyone feel accepted in our community," said Amy Chamberlin, MOSH director of marketing.