Slain Marine's Dad Calls Funeral Protests Criminal

"It means a lot to me and my family and all the other families that have gone through this and the ones that will still go through this," Snyder said.

Supreme Court Will Hear the Case

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on the case in the fall, and will rule as to whether Phelps and his congregation have the right to protest at soldiers' funerals.

Snyder's lawyer, Sean Summer, told "Good Morning America" that he is confident the Supreme Court will side with Snyder.

"We think, of course, everyone has a right to free speech, but when they took their so-called rights to Mr. Snyder's son's funeral they impeded upon his rights," he said. "They had the whole country to protest that day, they chose to travel all the way to Westminster, Md., to intentionally harass Mr. Snyder."

Margie Phelps previously said the Supreme Court's decision to hear the case would provide an "excellent platform for the words that we've faithfully delivered to the nation for 20 years."

Church's Controversial Mission

She said the church, consisting mostly of extended family members, has attended more than 600 random funerals of soldiers because members of the congregation are trying to get out the message that if the military stops accepting homosexuals, soldiers will stop dying.

"The issue about these dead soldiers," Margie Phelps said, "is an issue of acute public importance."

Founded in 1955 by the Rev. Fred Phelps, Westboro Baptist has grown in notoriety. It started out by picketing gay parades and other related events, but the small congregation began to travel the nation in 2005 to conduct noisy protests at the funerals of fallen servicemen.

As family members arrive to grieve the loss of their loved one, the picketers confront them with screaming, songs and signs bearing inflammatory messages such as "God Hates America" and "Thank God for Dead Soldiers" and "God Hates Fags."

People were shocked and outraged by the groups' actions, and motorcycle riding veterans have begun to get involved, attending the funerals to shield the grieving families.

There's an effort underway to craft federal legislation to severely restrict the protests, as a few states have already done.

A Family Calling

Most of Phelps' 13 children -- 11 of whom are lawyers -- carry on his work. Almost all the 70 or so members of the church are members of his family. They help move Phelps' message on the Internet, and have created music videos for songs such as "God Hates the World and All Her People."

The clan now travels the country, picketing disasters everywhere and saying that all catastrophes are caused by the sins of a nation that supports homosexuals.

"Thank God for 9/11," said Phelps' daughter, attorney Shirley Phelps-Roper. "Thank him, because we all deserve death in hell, and he has mercifully spared us and it's time for repentance."

The congregation has even included its children in its protests.

Phelps-Roper was arrested in 2007 after her 10-year-old son stomped on a flag at a serviceman's funeral in Nebraska. She was charged with suspicion of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

A judge refused to dismiss that and other related charges against her. A pre-trial conference on the case is expected this month.

ABC News' Kate McCarthy and Patrick McMenamin contributed to this report.

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