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Ted Haggard’s Confession

06 Nov

Larry Stockstill read Ted’s confession today in the Sunday morning worship service at New Life Church in Colorado Springs. (You can read the statement here.) In the letter, Ted sounds sorrowful, honest and he is taking full responsibility for his actions. It would seem to be that the truth has risen to the surface. Ted has confessed to sexual immorality. Here are a few quotes from Ted’s statement:

I am so sorry. I am sorry for the disappointment, the betrayal, and the hurt. I am sorry for the horrible example I have set for you.

This is Ted’s opening statement. There is no excuse or blame shift here, just heart-wrenching sorrow.

The last four days have been so difficult for me, my family and all of you, and I have further confused the situation with some of the things I’ve said during interviews with reporters who would catch me coming or going from my home. But I alone am responsible for the confusion caused by my inconsistent statements. The fact is, I am guilty of sexual immorality, and I take responsibility for the entire problem.

I would assume from this statement that the “sexual immorality” that he is admitting to is homosexual in nature. I appreciate that Ted is owning up to the truth and diffusing what could have been a lengthy and painful media circus. It appears that he is not trying to lie or shift blame. He is taking responsibility for his actions and this truth-telling takes a little bit of the sting out of it for me.

I am a deceiver and a liar. There is a part of my life that is so repulsive and dark that I’ve been warring against it all of my adult life.

This statement hit me like a ton of bricks. I appreciate his honesty and this is brutal honesty. I do pray that he finds healing and I think he will. Later in the letter he says that he is going to submit to the counsel of Jack Hayford, James Dobson and Tommy Barnett. These guys are the right guys for the job. They have the right spiritual and psychological background to help.

The public person I was wasn’t a lie; it was just incomplete. When I stopped communicating about my problems, the darkness increased and finally dominated me. As a result, I did things that were contrary to everything I believe.

The accusations that have been leveled against me are not all true, but enough of them are true that I have been appropriately and lovingly removed from ministry.

Sin has the power to completely overtake us if we continue to live according to the sinful nature. Sin’s power to dominate is why we need the Holy Spirit to transform us into the image of Christ. We need forgiveness from the guilt associated with sin, but we also need to be changed on the inside. I believe that Ted needed to be removed from ministry not as punishment, but so that he can get the healing that he needs. I am certainly not going to judge Ted or try to “punish” him by words of confirmation. I am going to continue to trust God with Ted’s transformation. What a story of grace and transformation this will be in years to come.

It is important that you know how much I love and appreciate my wife, Gayle. What I did should never reflect in a negative way on her relationship with me. She has been and continue to be incredible. The problem was not with her, my children, or any of you. It was created 100% by me.

It could have been easy for this to go unstated, but again it shows the rightness in his heart to remove any accusations towards his wife. I led a prayer today in our congregation for Ted, his wife, his family and his church.

Please forgive me. I am so embarrassed and ashamed. I caused this and I have no excuse. I am a sinner. I have fallen. I desperately need to be forgiven and healed.

I know this was written to his congregation, but I felt that it was meant to be read by the larger body of Christ. I for one forgive Ted and believe that God can heal him and restore what sin has stolen.

(You can read the entire statement here.)

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Posted by on November 6, 2006 in Ministry

 

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