Ted Haggard's Hypocrisy.

The catch-all forum for general topics and debates. Minimal moderation. Rated PG to PG-13.
Ray A

Ted Haggard's Hypocrisy.

Post by Ray A »

Some time ago I did a post on MTT about Ted Haggard, the leader of America's 30 million Evangelicals. I was trying to highlight the danger, I feel, these Christian fundamentalists pose by their extreme views. Haggart recently debated Professor Richard Dawkins and warned him about "intellectual arrogance", and eventually had Dawkins kicked off his church property. He has also been outspoken against homosexuality and gay marriage. Just a few moments ago I heard on ABC news that Haggard has stood aside as leader of the Evangelical movement because of accusations of having a three year liaison with a gay male prostitute. This was on the internet:

Evangelist Steps Down Amid Gay Sex Claim


Nov 3, 9:30 AM (ET)

By CATHERINE TSAI

(AP) A portrait of Ted Haggard, pastor of New Life Church, locate north of Colorado Springs, Colo.,...

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - A leading evangelist and outspoken opponent of gay marriage has given up his post as president of the National Association of Evangelicals while a church panel investigates allegations he paid a man for sex.

The Rev. Ted Haggard resigned as president of the 30 million-member association Thursday after being accused of paying the man for monthly trysts over the past three years.

Haggard, a married father of five, denied the allegations but also temporarily relinquished leadership of New Life Church pending an investigation.

"I am voluntarily stepping aside from leadership so that the overseer process can be allowed to proceed with integrity," he said in a statement. "I hope to be able to discuss this matter in more detail at a later date. In the interim, I will seek both spiritual advice and guidance."


Haggard told KUSA-TV late Wednesday: "I've never had a gay relationship with anybody, and I'm steady with my wife, I'm faithful to my wife."

Carolyn Haggard, spokeswoman for the 14,000-member New Life Church and the pastor's niece, said a four-member church panel will investigate the allegations. The board has the authority to discipline Haggard, including removing him from ministry work.

The acting senior pastor at New Life, Ross Parsley, said Haggard acknowledged some of the accusations were true.

"I just know that there has been some admission of indiscretion, not admission to all of the material that has been discussed, but there is an admission of some guilt,"
Parsley told KKTV-TV of Colorado Springs.

Parlsey did not elaborate, but in an e-mail addressed to congregants, he wrote that the board of overseers had since met with Haggard.


"It is important for you to know that he confessed to the overseers that some of the accusations against him are true. He has willingly and humbly submitted to the authority of the board of overseers, and will remain on administrative leave during the course of the investigation," the e-mail stated. A copy was obtained by KMGH-TV in Denver.

The allegations surfaced as voters in Colorado and seven other states get ready to decide Tuesday on amendments banning gay marriage. Besides the proposed ban on the Colorado ballot, a separate measure would establish the legality of domestic partnerships providing same-sex couples with many of the rights of married couples.

Church members were stunned.

"It's political, right before the elections," said Brian Boals, a New Life member for 17 years.

Church member E.J. Cox, 25, called the claims "ridiculous."

"People are always saying stuff about Pastor Ted," she said. "You just sort of blow it off. He's just like anyone else in the public eye."

The accusations were made by Mike Jones, 49, of Denver, who said he decided to go public because of the political fight over the amendments.

"I just want people to step back and take a look and say, 'Look, we're all sinners, we all have faults, but if two people want to get married, just let them, and let them have a happy life,'" said Jones, who added that he isn't working for any political group.

Jones, who said he is gay, said he was also upset when he discovered Haggard and the New Life Church had publicly opposed same-sex marriage.

"It made me angry that here's someone preaching about gay marriage and going behind the scenes having gay sex," he said.



Jones claimed Haggard paid him to have sex nearly every month over three years. He said he advertised himself as an escort on the Internet and was contacted by a man who called himself Art, who snorted methamphetamine before their sexual encounters to heighten his experience.

Jones said he later saw the man on television identified as Haggard and that the two last had sex in August.

He said he has voice mail messages from Haggard, as well as an envelope he said Haggard used to mail him cash. He declined to make the voice mails available to the AP, but KUSA-TV reported what it said were excerpts late Thursday that referred to methamphetamine.

"Hi Mike, this is Art," one call began, according to the station. "Hey, I was just calling to see if we could get any more. Either $100 or $200 supply."

A second message, left a few hours later, began: "Hi Mike, this is Art, I am here in Denver and sorry that I missed you. But as I said, if you want to go ahead and get the stuff, then that would be great. And I'll get it sometime next week or the week after or whenever."


Haggard, 50, was appointed president of the evangelicals association in March 2003. He has participated in conservative Christian leaders' conference calls with White House staffers and lobbied members of Congress last year on U.S. Supreme Court appointees after Sandra Day O'Connor announced her retirement.

After Massachusetts legalized gay marriage in 2004, Haggard and others began organizing state-by-state opposition. Last year, Haggard and officials from the nearby Christian ministry Focus on the Family announced plans to push Colorado's gay marriage ban for the 2006 ballot.

At the time, Haggard said that he believed marriage is a union between a man and woman rooted in centuries of tradition, and that research shows it's the best family unit for children.

---

Associated Press Writer Dan Elliott contributed to this report from Denver.


http://apnews.myway.com//article/200611 ... L5700.html

All I'm waiting for now is another Jimmy Swaggart performance, "I have sinned". I believe Haggard is just one of the "unlucky ones" who got caught.
Last edited by Ray A on Sat Nov 04, 2006 12:52 pm, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
gramps
God
Posts: 2485
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 9:43 am

Post by gramps »

Interesting!

I wonder what makes these guys crack and go over the edge?

That there are hypocrites out there, I've never doubted. But, what leads these guys to crack really intrigues me. Is it as simple as that they are so enticed by what they know is wrong, that they can't help themselves? That the stronger they preach against something, the more temptation they have to try it?

Was he always a closet homosexual, and couldn't come out for various reasons?

And adding the meth into the soup: wow!

Well, I don't know about his family, but this has got to be a big kick in the pants for his wife, and, more especially, his kids. I feel for them.

It's actually quite amazing to me that it hasn't happened in the Mormon church. Now, that would really shock me!
I detest my loose style and my libertine sentiments. I thank God, who has removed from my eyes the veil...
Adrian Beverland

harmony
God
Posts: 18195
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:35 pm

Post by harmony »

gramps wrote:Interesting!

I wonder what makes these guys crack and go over the edge?

That there are hypocrites out there, I've never doubted. But, what leads these guys to crack really intrigues me. Is it as simple as that they are so enticed by what they know is wrong, that they can't help themselves? That the stronger they preach against something, the more temptation they have to try it?

Was he always a closet homosexual, and couldn't come out for various reasons?

And adding the meth into the soup: wow!

Well, I don't know about his family, but this has got to be a big kick in the pants for his wife, and, more especially, his kids. I feel for them.

It's actually quite amazing to me that it hasn't happened in the Mormon church. Now, that would really shock me!


Depends on how high up the food chain you go. Remember George Lee? And the stake president in Butte MT?

User avatar
Jersey Girl
God
Posts: 34411
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 7:16 pm

Post by Jersey Girl »

Hello Ray,


I was hoping not to become involved in a discussion like this on the internet but I feel compelled to do so. Beginning with a few opening comments for clarity.

1. Ted is involved in two associations if you will. (1) National Association of Evangelicals with 30 million members and (2) Senior Pastor of New Life Church with congregation of approximately 14,000 members. New Life has affiliated with it, the World Prayer Center which is located adjacent to the church itself. New Life is what one would describe as a mega church. Just wanting to add clarity there.

2. He immediately stepped down from both positions which I feel was appropriate to do.

3. Ted is nothing at all like Swaggart. You are not going to see Ted down on his knees in a public forum, slobbering and whining before the congregation. He is not prone to that type of theatrics. He is not an actor. So far as spirit led Pastors go...Ted is the real thing.

4. New Life, as well as Ted, have enjoyed a good reputation in the community and a good relationship with the community at large.

Here are a few items that cause me concern...holes in the stories on both sides.


Item #1:

Mike claims that Ted came to him for sex and that Mike did not provide Ted with meth. Mike claims that he only gave Ted a "connection" for buying meth.

Mike's voice mail recordings indicate that Ted (using the name Art - Arthur is Ted's middle name) was setting up a transaction with Mike and not a 3rd party.

Issue #2:

In his very first public statement on air, Ted denied knowing Mike.
In his second public statement on air, Ted admitted knowing Mike and calling Mike for meth. He denies a sexual relationship with Mike.


Mike (the accuser) did not pass a polygraph when it came to responses about a sexual relationship with Ted.

Issue #3:

Ted claims that he was referred to Mike for a massage during a stay at one of the Denver hotel/motels.

Mike denies that he could have been a referral from a hotel/motel and only (previously) advertised on the internet as a male escort.

I will leave it at those for now.



Jersey Girl
Last edited by Jersey Girl on Sun Jul 29, 2007 11:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

Jersey Girl,

I'm taking this from a news report on AOL, so I can't verify anything, but I'm quoting it:

Evangelical Leader Accused of Gay Affair Resigns
Admits Buying Meth, Denies Having Sex
By CATHERINE TSAI, AP

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Nov. 3) - The Rev. Ted Haggard admitted Friday he bought methamphetamine and received a massage from a male prostitute. But the influential Christian evangelist insisted he threw the drugs away and never had sex with the man. Haggard, who as president of the National Association of Evangelicals wielded influence on Capitol Hill and condemned both gay marriage and homosexuality, resigned on Thursday after a Denver man named Mike Jones claimed that he had many drug-fueled trysts with Haggard.

On Friday, Haggard said he that received a massage from Jones after being referred to him by a Denver hotel, and that he bought meth for himself from the man.

But Haggard said he never had sex with Jones. And as for the drugs, "I was tempted, but I never used it," the 50-year-old Haggard told reporters from his vehicle while leaving his home with his wife and three of his five children.

Jones, 49, denied selling meth to Haggard. "Never," he told MSNBC. Haggard "met someone else that I had hooked him up with to buy it."

Jones also scoffed at the idea that a hotel would have sent Haggard to him.

[b]"No concierge in Denver would have referred me," he said. He said he had advertised himself as an escort only in gay publications or on gay Web sites.


Jones did not immediately return calls from The Associated Press on Friday.

In addition to resigning his post at the NAE, which claims 30 million members, Haggard stepped aside as leader of his 14,000-member New Life Church pending a church investigation. In a TV interview earlier this week, he said: "Never had a gay relationship with anybody, and I'm steady with my wife, I'm faithful to my wife."

The NAE's executive committee issued a statement Friday praising Haggard's service but saying "it is especially serious when a pastor and prominent Christian leader deliberately violates God's standards of conduct."

The statement did not mention the allegations against Haggard but noted he had admitted to "some indiscretions."

"Due to the seriousness of Rev. Haggard's misconduct while in the leadership roles he held, we anticipate that an extended period of recovery will be appropriate," the statement said.


In Denver, where Jones said his encounters with Haggard took place, police said in a statement they were "watching this situation unfold and plan on reaching out to the involved parties for information on crimes that may have been committed."

The statement did not say whether an active investigation was under way, and police spokeswoman Virginia Quinones did not immediately return a call.

District attorney's spokeswoman Lynn Kimbrough said a public admission isn't enough by itself to bring a case, but "if we can prove criminal conduct, we will" file charges.

Jones claims Haggard paid him for sex nearly every month for three years until August. He said Haggard identified himself as "Art." Jones said that he learned who Haggard really was when he saw the evangelical leader on television.

Jones said he went public with the allegations because Haggard has supported a measure on Tuesday's ballot that would amend the state constitution to ban gay marriage. Jones said he was also angry that Haggard in public condemned gay sex.

Haggard, who had been president since 2003 of the NAE, has participated in conservative Christian leaders' conference calls with White House staffers and lobbied members of Congress last year on U.S. Supreme Court nominees.

White House Deputy Press Secretary Tony Fratto said Friday Haggard had visited the White House once or twice and had participated in some of the conference calls, but he did not have exact numbers.


He declined to comment further, calling the matter a personal issue for Haggard. Fratto said he did not believe the allegations would discourage conservative Christians from voting Tuesday.

Corwin Smidt, a political scientist at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mich., and director of the Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics there, said Haggard's role with the association gave him some political clout, but the group's focus is more on religion than political activism.

"It isn't necessarily that all evangelicals are paying close attention to what he's saying and doing, but he is an important leader," Smidt said.

James Dobson, head of Focus on the Family, an influential conservative Christian ministry based in Colorado Springs, said he was "heartsick" over the allegations. He described Haggard as his close friend and colleague.

Aaron Stern, another pastor at New Life, told AP Television News on Friday that Haggard is a man of integrity and that church members don't know which of the allegations to believe.

Stern said has been telling church members seeking his advice that "People fail us. ... People do things we don't expect them to do, but in the midst of all of that our god is faithful, our god is strong."

Jones took a polygraph test Friday, and his answers to questions about whether he had sexual contact with Haggard "indicated deception," said John Kresnick, who administered the test.


Jones told reporters afterward he was disappointed by the results. "I am confused why I failed that, other than the fact that I'm totally exhausted," he said.

Kresnick, who said he administered the test for free at the request of KHOW radio in Denver, said exhaustion could have been a factor in the results.

"There's a possibility that his being mentally and physically exhausted could have caused him some problems," he said. Kresnick, who said he had 25 years' experience as a polygraph tester.


James Earle of Colorado Springs, a retired FBI polygraph tester, questioned whether fatigue could affect Jones' results.

"I don't think that just lack of sleep would cause a person to go truthful or deceptive, one way or the other," he said. Earle said he could not comment on the specifics of Jones' test without seeing the questions and the test charts.

Associated Press Writers Robert Weller and Dan Elliott contributed to this report from Denver.

11-03-06 19:51 EST


http://articles.news.aol.com/news/_a/ev ... 2309990027


The truth will come out, one way or the other, but Haggard's admissions remind me so much of Swaggart, who stalled and stalled, and said he paid a prostitute but "didn't have sex". Apparently he did everything but have sex, so he "didn't break the seventh commandment". Maybe he did, maybe he didn't, but why was he even with a prostitute? Haggard does have some problems as well, and for a Christian leader of such high standing why was he even dealing with drugs? And am I expected to believe that he got the drugs, but "threw them away" after paying $100/$200 for them? Yeah, and Clinton didn't inhale either.
Last edited by Ray A on Sat Nov 04, 2006 12:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Jersey Girl
God
Posts: 34411
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 7:16 pm

Post by Jersey Girl »

Ray,

Also look for online transcripts of the August phone calls. If I had to take a random guess by the content of the calls, I would pin it on drug deal. Let me know what you think.

And again, I emphasize that Ted is not a yahoolian like Swaggart.

Jersey Girl

(I thought the same thing about the Clinton line when I heard Ted's statement)

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

Jersey Girl, did you check out the poll in the link I gave?

Do you believe Ted Haggard's explanation?
No 80%
Not entirely 16%
Yes 4%
Total Votes: 78,171


But I'll still keep checking to get more facts.

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

I've been confusing "Haggart" with "Swaggart", so I've corrected the misspelling to his correct name, Haggard. Anyway, here is Haggard's entry in the "25 most influential Evangelicals in America":

TED HAGGARD

Opening Up the Umbrella Group

At a meeting with President Bush in November 2003, after nearly an hour of jovial Oval Office chat, the Rev. Ted Haggard, 48, got serious. He argued against Bush-imposed steel tariffs on the grounds that free markets foster economic growth, which helps the poor. A month later, the White House dropped the tariffs. Haggard wasn't alone in faulting the policy, and he doesn't claim to be the impetus, but as president of the National Association of Evangelicals, he gets listened to. He represents 30 million conservative Christians spread over 45,000 churches from 52 diverse denominations. Every Monday he participates in the West Wing conference call with evangelical leaders. The group continues to prod the President to campaign aggressively for a federal marriage amendment. "We wanted him to use the force of his office to actively lobby the Congress and Senate, which he did not adequately do," says Haggard. He is also working to broaden his group's agenda. A document issued last fall offered a theological justification for civic activism by U.S. Evangelicals, calling on them to protect the environment, promote global religious and political freedom and human rights, safeguard "wholesome family life," care for the poor and oppose racism. Says Haggard: "With the growth of Evangelicalism worldwide, we have to be involved in political and social action to impact the culture worldwide."


http://www.tedhaggard.com/time.jsp

His work for the poor and against racism gets some kudos. As for "wholesome family life".........

User avatar
Jersey Girl
God
Posts: 34411
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 7:16 pm

Post by Jersey Girl »

...
Last edited by Jersey Girl on Sun Jul 29, 2007 11:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

More on Haggard:

DENVER - A nationally known voice recognition expert says he believes voice mails left for a male escort are probably from a pastor in Colorado Springs. Nationally known voice recognition expert, Richard Sanders, compared two similar statements - one made in a voice mail recording and one from an interview of Pastor Ted Haggard conducted by 9NEWS.

"Overall, I would say it's probably the same person, from a scientific standpoint," said Sanders, after listening to the voice recordings.


Mike Jones, a gay man and admitted male escort, claims he and Haggard of New Life Church have been having a "sexual business" relationship for the past three years.....

Jones provided two voice messages to 9NEWS he claims are Haggard calling him.

The voice mails are from a man who calls himself "Art."

It should be noted Haggard's middle name is Arthur.


The first voice message, left on August 4 at 2:18 p.m., says:

"Hi Mike, this is Art. Hey, I was just calling to see if we could get any more. Either $100 or $200 supply. And I could pick it up really anytime. I could get it tomorrow or we could wait till next week sometime and so I also wanted to get your address. I could send you some money for inventory but that's probably not working, so if you have it then go ahead and get what you can and I may buzz up there later today, but I doubt your schedule would allow that unless you have some in the house. Okay, I'll check in with you later. Thanks a lot, bye."

The second voice message, left on August 4 at 5:10 p.m., says:

"Hi Mike, this is Art, I am here in Denver and sorry that I missed you. But as I said, if you want to go ahead and get the stuff, then that would be great. And I'll get it sometime next week or the week after or whenever. I will call though you early next week to see what's most convenient for you. Okay? Thanks a lot, bye."

Jones claims Art is referring to methamphetamine in the messages.

9NEWS had a nationally known voice recognition expert, Richard Sanders, listen to the voice mails to determine if it is Haggard.

Sanders has previously worked on such high profile cases as the Oklahoma City bombing trial, the Columbine High School shootings, the JonBenet Ramsey murder investigation and the Kobe Bryant case.

"This certainly sounds like the same person," said Sanders.

In his report, Sanders found that of 12 single words that were the same on both recordings, nine of those words were very strong matches. He also found that the entire phrase, "I don't know," was also a precise match.

"There are two different utterances of the phrase 'I don't know' that are about as identical as you can get," Sanders said.


Sanders makes his decision by comparing the resonance of the voice, the play of one's tongue and the inflection of vowel sounds.

"If we can find enough words and phrases that match then it's generally accepted by courts that that's the same person," he said.

Sanders will continue his analysis on Friday, saying it is painstakingly slow process.

Haggard told 9NEWS he is prepared for the outcome of the church's independent investigation.

After hearing about Haggard's resignation, Jones said, "I'm sad. I'm sad for him, but we do have consequences for our actions."

Haggard is the senior leader and founder of the New Life Church. It has 14,000 members and the church told 9NEWS that close to 2,000 of the members are junior high, high school and college students.

"I think the church and Christians have (gone) through very difficult times and this appears to be one of those," said James Groesbeck, a spiritual leader for the church.

Groesbeck says it was the right move for Haggard to step down. "If what's being said is true, then it's the responsible thing to do," he said.


Many members of the church reacted to the news with disbelief.

"There is no truth to this at all. I'm disappointed because I loved him as a senior pastor and it's just sad to see him move on like that," said Chris Herndon, a church member.

"He loves God, he loves his people, his wife, his family and he would never do anything like this," said Adrienne Simmonds, another church member.


Elders with the church held a meeting Thursday night to discuss the situation, but did not release any additional information to 9NEWS.


9news.com

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

Thanks for the anecdotal account, Jersey Girl. Let's see what he eventually does. I'll stick my neck out and say he will eventually do a "Swaggart".

User avatar
OUT OF MY MISERY
Savior (mortal ministry)
Posts: 922
Joined: Wed Oct 25, 2006 8:32 am

Post by OUT OF MY MISERY »

Does this not come down to the basic pure essence of life??

Be true to to your soul and do no harm.

there is no doubt that he did good works and helped many others along the way.

does not matter what he does behind closed doors.

well it did when he did these things but....

Will losing Ted's spark hurt us all???

yes it will

My prays are with him and his family right now and I pray that all will work out and that the press will back off this story so they can all HEAL
When I wake up I will be hungry....but this feels so good right now aaahhhhhh........

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

Here is what another minister had to say: http://www.earnedmedia.org/sbm1103.htm

"As an evangelical pastor myself now of a small new church - Heavenly Hope Christian Church - I can related to Rev. Haggard, yet my story is EXACTLY the opposite.

"I WAS gay for over 11 years, dated two male prostitutes from New York City and was a cocaine dealer in Connecticut back in the 1980's -- until Jesus changed my life," said Stephen.

"Today, my life is totally different. I am no longer gay. I'm happily married for over 13 years to my beautiful wife Irene, and I'm the father of two little children - a boy and a girl. I am also an evangelical minister, a pastor of a brand new, small Bible church in Connecticut, Heavenly Hope Christian Church.

"If these allegations are true about Rev. Haggard - America's Top Evangelical Christian - I am completely disgusted and dismayed. After being in major Christian circles for many years, the hypocrisy that I have found and personally seen in main stream Christianity is unfortunate and heartbreaking.

"I understand Rev. Haggard is innocent until proven guilty. However, seeing the reports that I have - along with millions of other Americans - this is a time we need to pray. The Bible says, 'Judgment begins in the house of God'," said Bennett.

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

For anyone who missed the Richard Dawkins interview with Ted Haggard, here it is:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmNjfpoRZpE

Get your popcorn ready.

User avatar
Jersey Girl
God
Posts: 34411
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 7:16 pm

Post by Jersey Girl »

Ray A wrote:For anyone who missed the Richard Dawkins interview with Ted Haggard, here it is:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmNjfpoRZpE

Get your popcorn ready.


I saw this video, Ray. What is your impression of Ted?

justthinking55
Nursery
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2006 3:42 pm

Post by justthinking55 »

I think there is a bit of schaude freude on your part RayA. Bill Clinton after his fall was invited to Willow Creek church (another mega evangelical church) where he spoke and was asked about his well known fall. He is actually in some kind of counselling relationship with well known evangelical Dr Tony Campolo, someone to whom he was accountable. Bill and Hilary were churchgoers. Again many evangelicals were more interested in redemption rather than sniggering or saying "what a hypercrit you are"
I asked an Anglican pastor yesterday when discussing this issue, why is it men do these crazy things that can wreck their careers and family lives? He said something that men can compartmelize their brains so they shut out any warning messages. When King David was perving on Bethsheba was he thinking of the consequences or was he just focused on her?
So RayA I hope he does not do a "Swaggert" and fulfill your cynical expectations but gets into some good counselling both spiritual and emotional and his family are also helped through their struggles this time

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

Jersey Girl wrote:I saw this video, Ray. What is your impression of Ted?


Well he accused Dawkins of "intellectual arrogance", but my impression was of his "spiritual arrogance". He had a menacing look at one stage of the video, as if he wanted to thump Dawkins, and to me that was totally creepy. Other than that he seems like a charismatic person. Of course I can't judge as well as you can since you've met him. But I wondered, when I first saw the video, if he was up to some kind of mischief in his private life because I have a natural tendency to think like this after the line of Evangelists who have previously been exposed. I think charismatic religious figures like this tend to have a high sexual drive, and that maybe part of what drives them religiously as well. I was not impressed with his "science" at all, and I think these ideas are just another part of their beliefs and have nothing at all to do with science. Overall I saw him as an intimidating person. Dawkins was clearly ruffled at one stage. I think he can exert the spiritual power to captivate his followers, but at the same time be very authoritarian. I noted that he's against gay marriage, but okay with gay civil unions, but I read his outspoken words against "homosexual acts" and where people will go for engaging in them, a place that begins with the letter H. This kind of duplicity is a cancer, and if it is revealed that he has really been doing this on a monthly basis for three years, I don't know how Americans can continue to trust Evangelical leaders. You'd be forever wondering what they were really up to.

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

justthinking55 wrote:I think there is a bit of schaude freude on your part RayA. Bill Clinton after his fall was invited to Willow Creek church (another mega evangelical church) where he spoke and was asked about his well known fall. He is actually in some kind of counselling relationship with well known evangelical Dr Tony Campolo, someone to whom he was accountable. Bill and Hilary were churchgoers. Again many evangelicals were more interested in redemption rather than sniggering or saying "what a hypercrit you are"
I asked an Anglican pastor yesterday when discussing this issue, why is it men do these crazy things that can wreck their careers and family lives? He said something that men can compartmelize their brains so they shut out any warning messages. When King David was perving on Bethsheba was he thinking of the consequences or was he just focused on her?
So RayA I hope he does not do a "Swaggert" and fulfill your cynical expectations but gets into some good counselling both spiritual and emotional and his family are also helped through their struggles this time


Are you concerned about his recovery, or the thousands of people he has betrayed? How many are now going to walk away not only from religion, but their belief in God as well? I would give an arm and a leg to have seen Dawkins' face when he heard about this. His book sales are now going to treble. If he was a generous man he'd give Haggard some of his royalties.

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

Justthinking55, consider this:

Why the Haggard Scandal Could Hurt Evangelical Turnout

David Kuo says the Ted Haggard scandal and its fallout shows why, as he makes clear in his bestselling book, it is so dangerous to mix faith and politics

By NATHAN THORNBURGH

David Kuo, the former number two at the Office of Faith-Based Initiatives in the first Bush White House, is camped out on the New York Times bestsellers list with his book, Tempting Faith, about the dangers of mixing politics and evangelicals. He says he met Ted Haggard only a few times, but says that the episode has saddened him nonetheless, especially the headline-grabbing fallout of Haggard's admissions.

"At the end of the day, this comes down to bringing Jesus into politics," he says. "Right now, it's not Ted Haggard on trial. It's Jesus. This is about the God he represents. When you make yourself a public figure and you fall, you bring the perception of your God with you."

"Jim Dobson's response was particularly telling," Kuo says of leading evangelical James Dobson. "He basically blamed the controversy on gays and Democrats. When evangelical leaders can't see beyond Tuesday on any question, what on earth is happening?"

Kuo says that the New Life Church was the starting place of many evangelical pastors who fanned out across the country, and Haggard was their mentor. Kuo's own church in the DC suburbs is led by former Haggard acolytes. This interconnectedness of so many congregations, along with Haggard's recently political bent, both amplify the effect of the scandal.

"The evangelical obsession with homosexuality makes this especially ironic. For many evangelical leaders, anything related to homosexuality is this special, dark sin. But that's not what the Bible says," says Kuo. "Really it's a sin like gossiping to your neighbor. Jesus doesn't even mention it at all."


Kuo also says it's important to remember that this is not just a scandal or a news story, but a moment of deep pain for Haggard's congregants. "Lost in all of this are thousands of people in Colorado Springs who are desperately hurting," he says.

Politically, Kuo sees a potential to reduce the evangelical vote on Tuesday. "I think the significance of the Haggard thing is this building case against evangelical involvement in politics. Christians are smart," he says. "They can see what influence politics is having."


http://www.time.com/time/nation/article ... 08,00.html

harmony
God
Posts: 18195
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:35 pm

Post by harmony »

This kind of duplicity is a cancer, and if it is revealed that he has really been doing this on a monthly basis for three years, I don't know how Americans can continue to trust Evangelical leaders. You'd be forever wondering what they were really up to.


Can we really blame the anti-Mormons and ex-Mormons who say the same charge can be leveled at Joseph Smith? He lied from the pulpit and in the press, repeated denied having more than one wife, even while at the same time, he was married to dozens of women. How could anyone trust him after that? (and remember, the church says Fanny was his first plural wife, and that was 1831. So everything he did after that is suspect, because he was hiding his sins?)

Ray A

Post by Ray A »

harmony wrote:
This kind of duplicity is a cancer, and if it is revealed that he has really been doing this on a monthly basis for three years, I don't know how Americans can continue to trust Evangelical leaders. You'd be forever wondering what they were really up to.


Can we really blame the anti-Mormons and ex-Mormons who say the same charge can be leveled at Joseph Smith? He lied from the pulpit and in the press, repeated denied having more than one wife, even while at the same time, he was married to dozens of women. How could anyone trust him after that? (and remember, the church says Fanny was his first plural wife, and that was 1831. So everything he did after that is suspect, because he was hiding his sins?)


None of the witnesses supported him in this. Oliver Cowdery spoke his mind and lost his membership in the church partly because of this. David Whitmer in his Address To All Believers in Christ considered Joseph a fallen prophet. In fact, polygamy led to Joseph Smith's death. I can't think of any doctrine more divisive in Mormon history than polygamy, and it was in fact the church leaders' lies about polygamy, detailed in D. Michael Quinn's Dialogue article in 1985 that sent me inactive for three months. Polygamy and the lies surrounding it, and any lies, have always been a serious source of disturbance. Look at how many people were affected by Paul Dunn (I wasn't, because I never thought much of his stories in the first place, and didn't put him on a pedestal). I said that Haggard's good work was in helping the poor and his opposition to racism. He no doubt did good work. I think the record of the LDS church presidents throughout the last century doesn't even come close to what Haggard is now accused of, and if an LDS church president did something like this there would be mass apostasy, that's my guess. They are still "only" leading 12 million people, and more than half have already left the church. Haggard was the leader of 30 million Evangelicals, and an influence on George Bush and US politics in general. I see few comparisons.

In regard to "everything being suspect", I certainly suspect polygamy came from Joseph's mind, not God, and I long ago lost my faith in church leaders as "infallible guides" or even "fallible guides", and ceased putting any trust in them in that regard. I do my own thinking and don't believe what they say necessarily comes from God. From my point of view everything should be questioned.

I don't blame anti or exMormons for losing faith, at all. What I have blamed some for is the way they have attacked the church incessantly, and some even seeking its destruction, or wanting it to fall, or getting revenge on the church, and the constant bickering and pettiness. If I was an Evangelical I wouldn't even want to show hatred to Mr. Haggard. I would just walk away and have nothing more to do with him or the movement, because he is going to have enough trouble just getting his life back on track. But what he did, if the accusations prove true, should be a frequently repeated lesson to others, just like how Baker and Swaggart are. This may be one time too many for most to handle.

PS: If Fanny was where Joseph first transgressed, in 1831 (but I believe it was in fact 1833 at the earliest), indeed all of the revelations after that could be suspect.

Post Reply