Bill Hybels is the senior pastor at Willow Creek Church in the Chicago area. Each August the Willow Creek Association hosts the Global Leadership Summit which includes world-renowned business and civic leaders, and is broadcast live to more than 200 cities across 70 countries.

At last years’ August 2011 Global Leadership Summit Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks, was invited to speak. However, some gay rights activists organized a petition and obtained 700+ signatures against his speaking there, because they thought that Willow Creek was anti-gay. Mr. Schultz did end up declining the invitation to speak at the Summit, even though he was already under contract to do so. The video below is Bill Hybels’ gracious response.

Our thanks to Gary Sinclair, ACF Cares Pastor at Austin Christian Fellowship, for letting us know about this. By the way, Gary runs a great blog at, check it out when you have a sec!