Annise-Parker-headshotChristians across the nation are mobilizing to defend a group of Houston pastors who were ordered by the city to turn over any sermons dealing with homosexuality, gender identity issues or Houston mayor. Their message is simple: “Don’t Mess with Texas Preachers.” Dave Welch, the executive director of the Texas Pastor Council, is one of the five ministers who received a subpoena. He said he will not be intimidated by Annise Parker, who is the city’s first openly lesbian mayor, nor will he comply with the city’s demands. “My answer to that is: ‘Bring it on,'” he said. Houston’s city attorney issued the subpoenas in a response to a lawsuit filed related to the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance (H.E.R.O.), the city’s new non-discrimination ordinance, also known as the “Bathroom Bill.” The new law, which has yet to take effect, would (among other things) allow men who identify as women to use the restrooms of their choice—and vice versa. Opponents launched a petition drive to put the issue on the ballot. More