Les Balsiger (activist)

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For other people named Les Balsiger, see Les Balsiger (disambiguation).

Les Balsiger is an American anti-Catholic activist. In the 1990s, Reverend Balsiger, a former car salesman,[1] led a short publicity campaign in the western United States criticizing Roman Catholicism, through his Printed Page Ministries based in Troy, Montana.[2]

Billboard campaign[edit]

In 1993, Roman Catholic Archbishop Michael Sheehan complained about billboards around Albuquerque, New Mexico that showed a caricature of the Pope with the words "a man of sin."[3] The bishop characterized the billboards, put up by Balsiger's Printed Page Ministries, as "anti-Catholic".[2][3] Balsiger denied he was anti-Catholic but refused to apologize for the billboards.[3]

Balsiger also attempted, but failed, to place anti-Catholic billboards in Denver, Colorado, during the Pope's visit there in 1993.[2] Balsiger said that his organization paid for 21 billboards to be shown in the Denver area during the Pope's visit.[2] The billboard company, Gannett Outdoors, refused to display any ads attacking the Pope or the Catholic Church.[2] "We paid the money, we have signed the contract, and now they have refused to put them up," said Balsiger.[2] "I don't want to be un-Christian about this, but this isn't the end of this matter. We could be on the courthouse steps (today)," he said.[2] The billboards would have shown a toll-free telephone number, an image of the Pope waving, and the message: "The Bible says, 'The man of sin shall be revealed,' II Thessalonians 2:3."[2] Balsiger said that he would get a court injunction upholding the contract so that the billboards would be displayed while he fought the Gannett anti-defamation policy.[2]

Other activities[edit]

Balsiger, who is linked to other Historic Adventist anti-Catholic groups, claimed the anti-Catholic movement has a national following of about 400,000 people.[1][4][5] Balsiger was also the publisher of a newspaper, The Protestant, and he opened a training school in Hungary to build up his work in Eastern Europe.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Langlois, Ed (July 27, 2001). "Spruced-up billboard marks beginning of new 'pope-is-Antichrist' campaign". Catholic Sentinel. Retrieved June 19, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i Mehle, Michael (August 4, 1993). "Billboard Supplier Won't Run Attacks on Pope". Rocky Mountain News. Retrieved June 19, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c Associated Press (December 25, 1993). "Billboard Bashing". Salt Lake Tribune. 
  4. ^ Langlois, Ed (June 6, 2002). "Billboard contract lapses, 'Pope is Antichrist' remains; more ads planned". Catholic Sentinel. Retrieved June 19, 2011. 
  5. ^ Langlois, Ed (April 29, 2000). "Oregonian runs anti-Catholic ad on Easter". Catholic Sentinel. Retrieved June 19, 2011.