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Ex-Westboro Church Member Shunned By Family, Apologizes For Hate Protests 'I Hurt People & I Am Sorry For That'

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Feb. 13 2013, Published 1:49 p.m. ET

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A former member of the Westboro Baptist Church -- the hate mongers who carry outrageous signs such as "God Hates F**s," "The Jews Killed Jesus," and "Thank God For Dead Soldiers" to military and celebrity funerals for attention and publicity -- tearily apologizes for her involvement on Wednesday's Anderson Live.

"I hurt people and I am sorry for that," said Libby Alvarez -- the granddaughter of Westboro Baptist Church founder Fred Waldron Phelps, Sr. -- who claims she didn't believe the group's racist, homophobic and blasphemous outpour "was offensive when I was there.

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"I understand now looking back on it that I hurt people's feelings," she told Anderson Cooper. "I thought I was doing good, I honestly did. I thought the way to love my neighbor was to tell them that their sins were taking them to hell."

Alvarez said at the time she was involved with the controversial church, she was essentially brainwashed into thinking she was disseminating a positive message into the community.

"In the moment, I thought I was doing the right thing, I thought I was loving my neighbor," she said.

She said she's since been ostracized from all associated with the Topeka, Kansas-based group, which consists predominantly of members of Phelps' extended family.

"I knew that I would never be able to talk to my family again, which is sad because our family -- those are the only people that we grew up -- those are the only people that we were allowed to associate with and become friends with and make memories with.

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"So I was pretty much leaving everything."

Also in the interview, Anderson brings the ex-WBC member face to face with Sherry Wyatt, the mother of a soldier whose funeral the group picketed.

After commending Alvarez for her bravery in severing ties with the despicable bunch, she told her what her exact reaction was at learning they'd be picketing her son's burial.

"Absolute dread -- 'Oh no' -- that was my first reaction," she said.

Check out the interview Wednesday on Anderson Live.



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