Haggard quits pray-away-the-gay program
And you thought the story was over. A short recap:
After three weeks of intensive “restoration” therapy, former megachurch leader, meth-purchaser and intimate man-on-man massage enthusiast Ted Haggard declared that he was “completely heterosexual.” He submitted himself to a Daddy Dobson-approved team of godly, clean men who inserted themselves into the life of the fallen pastor, who was tossed out from New Life Church in November 2006.
Even so, he ran into quite a bit of trouble during the follow-up part of his spiritual restoration, planning to move into a Phoenix halfway house, the Dream Center, to “minister to men” there while working toward his degree in counseling. The that invitation was withdrawn after Ted sent out a boldly insane “fund-me-please” letter asking for fans to support him rather than getting himself a j-o-b.
It also didn’t go over well with his de-gaying team that the letter was sent out from a Colorado Springs outfit called “Families With a Mission,” run by Paul G. Huberty who is registered as a sex offender (in Hawaii for “sodomy and indecent acts” with “a 17-year-old female).
Now comes this news that via press release from Ted’s former digs, now headed up by New Life Church’s senior pastor, Brady Boyd, that Haggard has left what could now be called the heterosexual “maintenance” program — and perhaps Ted departed before it could squeeze out any residual homo inclinations from him. It’s a vague letter — and it’s after the jump. From Colorado Confidential, which has been all over the entire Haggard saga. What can you read in these tea leaves?
New Life Church
Colorado Springs, CO
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Ted Haggard’s leadership of New Life Church for many years was extraordinary and the depth of spiritual maturity that is found today in the church is in large part attributed to his leadership as the founding senior pastor.
In January 2007, Ted Haggard voluntarily agreed to enter a process of spiritual restoration. He has selected Phoenix First Assembly and Pastor Tommy Barnett as his local church fellowship and is maintaining an accountability relationship there. He has recently requested to end his official relationship with the New Life Church Restoration Team and this has been accepted by them.
New Life Church recognizes the process of restoring Ted Haggard is incomplete and maintains its original stance that he should not return to vocational ministry. However, we wish him and his family only success in the future.
Because spiritual restoration is a necessarily confidential process, the church does not anticipate that it, or its Overseers or Restorers will make further comment about it.
You have to wonder what is really going on here, and what Ted Haggard has learned about the process of trying to pray-away-the-gay. Cara DeGette of Colorado Confidential aptly noted:
At the time, the church’s claim of Haggard’s so-termed “restored” sexual orientation status was met with disbelief from many quarters, most notably from the Christian group Soulforce, whose gay and lesbian members reject claims that homosexuality is either:
a. Something that can be “cured”
b. A sin.
What, if anything do you think Ted Haggard will say publicly about his experience? Certainly if the evangelical former pastor has not truly reclaimed his heterosexuality after the very strict re-programming, it would be a serious blow to the ex-gay industry if he were to come forward and say that he now realizes that his same-sex desires are neither evil or wrong and that these cures have nothing to do with getting right with God.
We may never know what he and his family have gone through because of the denial and pain fostered by the Dobson-endorsed “ex-gay” program.
Hat tip, Joe.My.God.