Anti-gay Christian “family” group folds in wake of founder’s affair
A fundamentalist organisation run by a former police officer turned preacher has reportedly been disbanded.
The Christian Congress for Traditional Values, founded in 2005, was instrumental in organising anti-gay demonstrations outside Parliament opposing the Sexual Orientation Regulations.
The closure of CCTV was sparked when its founder, former Met officer Michael Reid, was caught having an affair with the choir mistress of his church in Brentwood.
A CCTV campaign in January, which took the form of a mobile poster, “Gay Aim: Abolish the Family,” breached Advertising Standards Authority code.
In April, founding member and preacher of family values Bishop Reid stepped down after he admitted to an eight year extra-marital relationship with his church’s music director, Sheila Graziano.
64 year-old Reid is a former police officer and insurance salesman, who entered Christian ministry without any formal theological education.
More than thirty years ago he founded Peniel Pentecostal Church in Essex, which was later renamed “Michael Reid Ministries.”
The organisation also runs a school with 170 pupils aged 2 to 19 and a college in Brentwood, as well as a TV ministry.
He has reportedly been dismissed from all posts at Peniel.
Reid is known for his far-right views, such as gays are “filthy perverts” and Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists are variously described in videoed sermons as “vile” and “foul heathens.”
Christians who do not work, Reid said in one video recording, should be allowed to starve.
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His teachings on the family are not to everyone’s taste.
Writing in the latest issue of the Peniel’s newspaper, Reid says: “Parents have a tremendous responsibility when they have children; fathers have the biggest responsibility, because God has placed them as ‘head’ of the household, to give leadership to the family by setting the standards.”
He continues: “In today’s society, however, many women have usurped the place that God gave to their husbands.”
The CCTV used to describe itself as “an alliance of Christians from a wide spectrum of professional and working backgrounds who have pledged to campaign against the declared intention of BBC executives to push back the boundaries’ of taste and decency.”
The website no longer exists.