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Michigan church slammed for ‘counselling’ sessions for LGBTQ teenage girls

Meka Beresford February 8, 2018
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A gay pastor in Brazil preaches that homosexuals "don't need a cure, but love" (Photo by APU GOMES/AFP/Getty Images)

A church in Michigan has been slammed for offering ‘gay cure therapy’ under the guise of counselling sessions for LGBTQ teenage girls.

The Metro City Church in Riverview, Michigan launched a six-week course for girls between 12 and 16 called the “Unashamed Identity Workshop”.

The Metro City Church in Riverview, Michigan (Google Maps)

Related: Exclusive: Vue cinema to screen documentary advocating gay ‘cure’ therapy

The course targeted girls who “think they might be gay, bisexual or transgender”.

The advertisement for the workshop has since been removed from the website of the church after thousands of people sent complaints.

The campaign against the church was led by Sara Cunningham, who came across the church’s course after a friend posted about it online.

She felt compelled to lead the charge against the Michigan church because she was ousted from her church after her son came out as gay.

“Parents shouldn’t have to choose between their church and their children,” she explained.

Church rainbow flag

Related: 20,000 LGBT teens will undergo gay cure therapy before they’re 18, study reveals

Pastor Jeremy Schossau of the church claimed that they were not trying to force people to take the counselling but only offering it those who want it.

He said: “Over the past week we have gotten thousands and thousands of emails and messages. The vast majority are filled with vulgarity, hate, and threats of all kinds.

“What we find incredibly odd is there is no seeking to understand what we are truly doing. Only the assumption that we are practising some sort of conversion therapy.”

Schossau claimed that he has had death threats.

church of england same-sex marriage
(Photo: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images)

Related: Facebook ‘gay cure’ ad sparks outrage

“People have literally threatened to kill me and my family, to burn our house down, to burn our church down, to assault the people of our church and our staff.

“We find it incredibly odd that a community that has been so vocal about tolerance, about understanding somebody else’s perspective, about freedom, about choice – a community that has been so pro-choice – is seemingly very anti-choice when it comes to sexuality,” he added.

The pastor insisted that the counselling does not shame the attendees or “convert” them.

Anti-same-sex marriage protesters in Australia
Anti-same-sex marriage protesters in Australia (PETER PARKS/AFP/Getty Images)

However, it will just “help your girl be unashamed of her true sexual identity given to her by God at birth through thoughtful, relevant and biblical counsel.”

Schossau went on to accuse the LGBTQ community of hypocrisy because they “think that you can have a choice to move from heterosexuality into homosexuality but not homosexuality into heterosexuality”.

“Why is it wrong for somebody to call us who is struggling and hurting and just looking for somebody to talk to?

“And if they move toward heterosexuality and we celebrate that, why is that wrong? It is no different.”

Related topics: US

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