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A day after we heard that Westboro Baptist Church founder Fred Phelps may be on the “edge of death,” the church has responded to a number of the questions people are asking… by pretty much evading everything.

Q: Is Fred Phelps near death?
A: Fred Phelps is a person of advanced age, and such people sometimes have health issues. Fred Phelps has health issues, but the idea that someone would suggest that he is near death, is not only highly speculative, but foolish considering that all such matters are the sole prerogative of God…

That, to me, is a fancy way of saying he has health issues… it certainly doesn’t dispel the charges that he’s currently in hospice care.

Q: Has Fred Phelps been ‘excluded’ from membership at Westboro Baptist Church?
A: Membership issues are private.

That’s… not a definitive no. That’s not even a hint of a no. This may be the most intriguing question about the whole situation: Why might Phelps have been excommunicated from his own church?
There is still a lot we don’t know about the whole situation. Anything more definitive than what we’ve already posted on this site is pure speculation.

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Hemant Mehta is the founder of, a YouTube creator, podcast co-host, and author of multiple books about atheism. He can be reached at @HemantMehta.