In June, Ex-Gay Watch noted that First Stone Ministries was one of twenty ministries to have severed itself from Exodus International recently. Now the Oklahoma City-based group has publicly explained its actions in a press release, citing changes in “ideology and leadership” as reasons for the split:
Press Release: FSM No Longer an Exodus Ministry
Many of you may know that for 36 years, First Stone Ministries has been affiliated with Exodus International, a network of ministries that all proclaim freedom from homosexuality through relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the last several months, the leadership of First Stone Ministries has become increasingly aware of some changes in Exodus’s ideology and leadership that have resulted in us feeling we are unable to continue as an Exodus Member ministry while maintaining Biblical integrity and a clear conscience before God. In April, First Stone officially resigned as an Exodus Member ministry. We remain dedicated to proclaiming Biblical truth in all sexual and relational matters, and to providing a safe place for those struggling with unwanted same-sex attractions to find healing and freedom in Christ and to be empowered to “go and sin no more”. Pray for us as we seek to remain connected with other Biblically-sound ministries and to maintain and even increase our influence to the Church and culture in Oklahoma and throughout the Midwest.
Two sources which provide a prophetic and scholarly perspective of our decision:
The choice of links at the end reveals FSM’s problem with two related aspects of recent changes at Exodus: first, the new emphasis on “eternal security,” namely the idea that even a homosexual could still go to heaven as long as he was once a genuinely “saved” Christian (this is Gagnon’s biggest beef); and second, the withdrawal of support for reparative therapy (so Andy Comiskey).
Underneath the press release is a banner ad for an upcoming visit from Comiskey, confirming that for many leaving Exodus at the moment, the Desert Stream founder is now the former homosexual du jour.