Cracker Barrel not hosting controversial pastor

Posted at 9:40 PM, Jun 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-19 09:51:22-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Cracker Barrel is not hosting an event for the church of a controversial pastor after the Tennessee Democratic Party called out the restaurant.

All Scripture Baptist Church Pastor and Knox County detective Grayson Fritts is under investigation after his anti-gay sermons surfaced. According to Cracker Barrel, they never agreed to host the event announced by the pastor.

One sermon in particular called for "homos" to be put to death. WVLT Local 8 News, who sat in one of Fritts' recent sermons, he later explained what he meant.

Fritts told his congregation that he simply upheld the principles of the Bible and called other Baptist preachers, "weak and spineless" for not doing the same. Fritts said, "Just as much as God loves, God hates." Fritts said he never called on civilians to commit violence against members of the LGBTQ+. He told his congregation Wednesday night that responsibility lies with the government. Grant listened as Fritts finished his commentary by saying, "Put homos to death."

In a letter to the restaurant's CEO, Mary Mancini says hosting the event is "in direct conflict with the culture ou are working so hard to build as well as the inclusivity and diversity pledge stated on your website."

Cracker Barrel responded saying:

"Cracker Barrel is not affiliated in any way with Mr. Fritts or All Scripture Baptist and we disagree strongly with their statements of hate and divisiveness. We are not hosting any event on June 29, and Mr. Fritts and his group will not be permitted on site.

At Cracker Barrel, we work hard to foster a culture that is welcoming and inclusive – we have a zero-tolerance policy for discriminatory treatment or harassment of any sort. We take pride in serving as a home away from home for all guests and in showing our communities and our country that the hospitality we practice is open to everyone.

Our corporate policy strictly prohibits any type of protest or public demonstration on our property or in our stores, and we have advised All Scripture Baptist that their event will not be allowed at Cracker Barrel. We serve everyone who walks through our doors with genuine hospitality, not hate, and require all guests to do the same."