Friday, June 29, 2012

Love, then logic: Prayer is not a gay 'cure'

Posted By on Fri, Jun 29, 2012 at 6:56 PM

It probably won't come as any great surprise to you, but homosexuality cannot be "cured" by prayer.

What might surprise you, however, is that the president of Exodus International, a 36-year-old organization dedicated to that very idea, has finally publicly admitted that no one can simply pray the gay away.

chambers.jpg

From the Associated Press:

“I do not believe that cure is a word that is applicable to really any struggle, homosexuality included,” said [Alan] Chambers, who is married to a woman and has children, but speaks openly about his own sexual attraction to men. “For someone to put out a shingle and say, ‘I can cure homosexuality’ — that to me is as bizarre as someone saying they can cure any other common temptation or struggle that anyone faces on Planet Earth.”

Exodus International is an "Orlando-based group that boasts 260 member ministries around the U.S. and world." For years, Colorado Springs-based Focus on the Family partnered with Exodus in offering Love Won Out conferences, which were meant to help gay men and women use the power of faith to overcome their sexual desires.

As Focus put it at the time:

Focus on the Family launched Love Won Out in 1998 to educate and equip Christians on how to respond to the issue of homosexuality in a biblical way, and has traveled to more than 50 cities worldwide with its message of truth and grace. The conference has always featured Exodus speakers and highlighted Exodus member ministries.

"There is no one better equipped to take over the operation of Love Won Out than Alan and his team," said Focus on the Family's Melissa Fryrear, a Love Won Out speaker and host for more than six years. "They have been with us since the beginning. They have stood alongside us in sharing the hope that, with Christ, transformation is possible for those unhappy with same-sex attractions."

Chambers himself is gay. Yet he is married to a woman. He describes this marriage to the AP as "the best marriage I know. ... It’s an amazing thing, yet I do have same-sex attractions. Those things don’t overwhelm me or my marriage; they are something that informs me like any other struggle I might bring to the table.”

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