... at a convenient moment.
The director of the HBO's The Trials of Ted Haggard insists that her film isn't meant to criticize the ex-evangelical pastor whose dalliance with crystal meth and male hookers led to his ouster from New Life Church in Colorado Springs. Instead Alexandra Pelosi's documentary will take aim at his church.
In a revealing interview with Belief Net, Pelosi - who is, deliciously, the daughter of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi - said:
"The story is about a church that preaches forgiveness. He, as a pastor, preached forgiveness and redemption. But he was not forgiven and he was not redeemed. They cast him out and they exiled him."
Maybe that's the reason why Brady Boyd, who succeeded Ted Haggard as senior pastor of New Life, is - reluctantly, and with a burdensome heart - telling Eric Gorski of the Associated Press that a young male ministry volunteer came forward in late 2006 to inform church elders that he and Haggard also shared a Close Erection of the Third Kind. So now Boyd probably figures, if this HBO film is gonna go easy on Haggard at the expense of our church, then let's make sure Haggard's ass gets held to the fire, too. From AP: Boyd said an "overwhelming pool of evidence" pointed to an "inappropriate, consensual sexual relationship" that "went on for a long period of time ... it wasn't a one-time act." Boyd said the man was in his early 20s at the time. He said he was certain the man was of legal age when it began... The disclosure comes as Haggard, 52, is about to give a series of high-profile interviews to promote the cable documentary about his time in exile. He is scheduled to appear on CNN's Larry King Live on Thursday, the date of the documentary's premiere, and already has taped "The Oprah Winfrey Show."
So why did New Life keep it a secret when the young man first came to them? (I mean, besides the fact that they're a bunch of hypocrties whose primary concern has always been their church's reputation.) You'll recall that in the wake of Hustlergate, a church board member said that there was no evidence to suggest that Haggard had sexual relations with anyone but Mike Jones, the former male prostitute. He was clearly lying. In fact, New Life Church paid hush money to the young volunteer - which they're calling "a legal settlement" - for counseling and college tuition, with the condition that he would never discuss the matter publicly. Boyd has refused to name the volunteer or the settlement amount.
Haggard, who has been working closely with HBO on the documentary, spoke with the San Francisco Chronicle: Over the phone a few weeks ago, Haggard, 52, says he realizes that some people will see his life spiral, recall his anti-gay marriage views and condemnation of homosexual behavior, and say he deserved it... In the film, he talks about how the church could have used his story as an example of how to preach forgiveness. But churches are a business, too, he said, and he acknowledged that he was bad for business. He said the church told him to "go to hell."
Source: The Progressive Puppy