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Not So Ex-Gay “Ex-Gay Leader” Closes Shop

Jim Burroway

March 16th, 2010
Matthew C. Manning

Matthew C. Manning

Last summer, Ex-Gay Watch’s David Roberts published a very carefully resourced investigation into the three arrests of Matthew C. Manning, who runs a California-based ex-gay ministry known as Lighthouse World Evangelism. Manning had been charged in 1998, 2000, and in 2005 with complaints of soliciting other males for sexual encounters in public parks and other venues. He was not convicted in the first two cases but the 2005 episode, in which Manning pleaded “no contest,” includes an order to stay away from Santa Rosa-area 24 Hour Fitness locations for one year.

Roberts’ investigative journalism is truly remarkable, and he has repeated that careful attention to detail in today’s carefully researched follow-up to that story. The very day after Ex-Gay Watch’s investigative report appeared online last June, Manning petitioned the California courts to have his 2005 conviction expunged from the record, a move that California law provides for in some cases. That petition was granted in August. Since then, Manning tried to re-establish his ministry in San Francisco, but now Manning claims that a revelation from God has told him to close up shop.

Manning had made a big splash in the ex-gay world in 2002 when he appeared on Pat Robertson’s 700 Club, claiming to have been “delivered” from homosexuality in 1989, and miraculously healed from full-blown AIDS in 1994. The extraordinary claim of a miraculous healing has never been documented. As Roberts points out, Manning also spoke alongside other illustrious ex-gay leaders such as Exodus President Alan Chambers, former ex-gay spokesman John Paulk, and Focus on the Family ex-gay speaker Mike Haley. He now appears focused on arguing with the heart-wrenching blog of a mother whose two sons fell under Manning’s influence.



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