Press release issued today by Evangelicals Concerned
ABC-TV Debates Ex-gay Myth
EC Member is Guest on ABC-TV This Thursday Morning
Watch this Thursday morning’s Good Morning America (on ABC-TV, check your local listings or the Good Morning America website). Dr. Randy Baxter has been invited to appear on the program to talk about the real side of ex-gay ministries and debunk the ex-gay myth. Randy, a longtime member of the pro-gay ministry Evangelicals Concerned, has personal experiences with ex-gay ministries to share. These experiences are similar to the Tennessee teenager who recently put out a plea for help on the Internet.
In June, Zach, a sixteen year old, was placed by his parents in Refuge, a Tennessee homosexual conversation therapy program sponsored by the ministry Love in Action. While in the program, he was able to post a plea for help on the Internet blog myspace.com. (See story on ABCNEWS.com).
On May 29, the teen wrote that his parents sat him down and told him he was going to a “fundamentalist Christian program for gays.”
“They tell me that there is something psychologically wrong with me, and they ‘raised me wrong.’ I’m a big screw up to them, who isn’t on the path God wants me to be on. So I’m sitting here in tears, [joining] the rest of those kids who complain about their parents on blogs – and I can’t help it,” Zach wrote.
“I have this horrible feeling all of the time… I wish this on no person… I ran away for a short while. I came back and they took everything from me, they don’t want me to have outside influences– I don’t know how long I’m going to be on [the computer], because if they wake up… The program starts June 6. I’m just here to let everyone know I am still alive. I’m sure you’ve left messages on my cell phone, they took that and my keys… and the computer.. and I’ve been homebound. =sigh= I just need this to be over.”
– Additional excerpts from myspace.com
Zach’s blog sparked controversy, protests and an investigation by the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services. Although the investigation preliminarily concluded no physical child abuse was occurring, Zach has not been heard from since June 3, according to ABC News.
Randy has reconciled his faith and sexual orientation through Evangelicals Concerned, a safe and positive alternative seeking to help GLBT people embrace both their Christianity and sexuality.
Evangelicals Concerned creates safe places in North America for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Christians to reconcile their faith and sexuality and to grow toward Christian maturity. Visit EC on the Web at www.ecwr.org.
Evangelicals Concerned Western Region (ECWR) is a nationwide ministry, which encourages and affirms lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Christians in their faith. We organize small groups, bible studies, social activities and other events in many North American cities, and we organize national and regional conferences every year.
For general media inquiries, call Barry Dixon, EC Media Coordinator, at (626) 440-0482.
I believe the press release is in error when it says that Stark issues a plea for help from within LIA. Stark last logged in to his blog on June 5, before “boot camp” commenced.