Reactions To Haggard Allegations

The media is in a proverbial feeding frenzy over allegations that New Life Church pastor Ted Haggard engaged in 3 year homosexual relationship with a male prostitute while using methamphetamine.

But today, local GLBT groups and political campaigns reacted to the news in their own way. “This is a time for us to be a people of grace and compassion.  It is not a time for us to speculate, accuse, judge or celebrate,” said Pastor Dan Koeshall with Pikes Peak Metropolitan Community Church in Colorado Springs, a GLBT-friendly place of worship.

“If this is true, I can’t imagine the pain he must have suffered in silence while being the figurehead for such a large and conservative movement.”

Coloradans For Marriage, the organization working to pass a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage state-wide released a brief statement, saying that it “is a difficult situation for Pastor Haggard and his family.  However, we will not let this distract us with our efforts to pass the Colorado Marriage Amendment to define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.”

The No On 43 campaign did not have a comment.

“This is the second time this week that a community leader in Colorado Springs has had to step down from his congregation due to his perceived or actual sexual orientation.” said Ryan Acker with the Pikes Peak Gay & Lesbian Community Center, a nonprofit organization that tackles GLBT discrimination in the Springs.

Acker was referring to Benjamin L. Reynolds, a pastor at the Emmanuel Missionary Baptist Church who openly came out as a homosexual and resigned from his post shortly after.

“It’s really our hope that these events over the past two weeks help further demonstrate the need for Coloradans to understand the issues that face GLBT people,” Acker said in response to the allegations.

At deadline, Coloradans For Fairness, the committee working to legalize domestic partnerships in the state, did not respond to a request for comment.

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About the Author

Erin Rosa

Erin Rosa was born in Spain and raised in Colorado Springs. She is a freelance writer currently living in Denver. Rosa's work has been featured in a variety of news outlets including the Huffington Post, Democracy Now!, and the Rocky Mountain Chronicle, an alternative-weekly in Northern Colorado where she worked as a columnist covering the state legislature.

Rosa has received awards from the Society of Professional Journalists for her reporting on lobbying and woman's health issues. She was also tapped with a rare honorable mention award by the Newspaper Guild-CWA's David S. Barr Award in 2008--only the second such honor conferred in its nine-year history--for her investigative series covering the federal government's Supermax prison in the state.

Rosa covers the labor community, corrections, immigration and government transparency matters.

She can be reached at erosa@coloradoindependent.com.

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