Disgraced preacher “discovers” he is straight
Ted Haggard, the former pastor of an evangelical super church who was forced to resign after revelations of a three-year affair with a male prostitute, has said he was “acting out” and is still a heterosexual.
The revelation came in an interview in the Denver Post with one of the four pastors who have been giving Haggard an intensive course of counselling.
“He is completely heterosexual. That is something he discovered,” Rev Tim Ralph told the paper.
“It was the acting-out situations where things took place. It wasn’t a constant thing.”
Colorado’s New Life Church’s founder and former senior pastor also resigned as president of the National Association of Evangelicals after it emerged that he had been involved in a sexual relationship with Mike Jones.
Rev Ralph also claimed the only gay relationship Haggard ever had was with the prostitute.
However, Lou Sheldon, chairman of the homophobic Traditional Values Coalition told New York’s The Jewish Week last November that he and many other people had been aware of Haggard’s homosexuality, “for a while… but we weren’t sure just how to deal with it…. Ted and I had a discussion.
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“He said homosexuality is genetic. I said, no it isn’t. But I just knew he was covering up. They need to say that.”
Jones, 49, claims that Haggard, a vocal opponent of gay marriage, was a monthly client for the last three years.
In an apology to the church, Haggard had urged members to forgive and thank Jones for exposing deceit. Church members invited Jones to the church several times.
Jones visited the New Life Church last Sunday.
The Christian Broadcasting Network reports that Jones was warmly greeted by members of the congregation.
Haggard has revealed he and his wife plan to move away from Colorado and study for a degree in psychology.