Toronto – Rev. Ken Campbell, Evangelical Minister from Milton, Ontario, had a Justice of the Peace in Toronto lay charges against Merle Terlesky for disturbing a religious service. This charge was later changed to disturbing the peace. Terlesky, aged 27, was found guilty of the latter charge and was ordered to perform 75 hours of community service over a nine-month period. He was also ordered to stay away from any activity organized by Rev. Campbell, and report to his parole officer every month.
This was the first time that the abrasive Terlesky – after years of harassing pro-lifers – had been convicted of a criminal offence. (We have been told that there was no point in finding him – he has no money.)
The charges were laid after Terlesky, using a bullhorn, led about 30 gays and lesbians into Nathan Philips Square in Toronto to interrupt a Christian concert organized by Rev. Campbell on Sunday evening, August 18, 1991. They blew whistles, pushed people out of their chairs, threw condoms around, and chanted: “Queer – we’re here, and we’re not going away.” They also screamed their usual pro-abortion ditties: “Not the church – not the state; women will decide their fate.” The men kissing each other, men and women yelling profanities, handed out leaflets and succeeded in frightening the 50 people in attendance.
The police were called but didn’t turn up for an hour – fearing a clash with the gays and lesbians. When they arrived most of the people in the square had dispersed.
This was the third Christian concert in a series of four planned by Mr. Campbell at the square in front of the new City Hall.
Before he left, Terlesky announced that they would be back the following week to disrupt the next one. However, at that time there were 25 police officers including two on horseback, and a paddy wagon: there was no disturbance.
After Campbell laid charges Terlesky told Campbell, “You haven’t got a hope in hell of winning the case.” Campbell replied: “My hope is in heaven.”
On Sunday, August 2 of this year, over 3,000 people attended Rev. Campbell’s Christian concert in the square; over 600 song sheets were given out to couples. Ken Campbell announced two new Christian concerts for Nathan Philips Square on August 16 and 30, under the banner of Canadian Pride Days. Merle won’t be there.