Former Exodus Leader Alan P. Medinger Died
June 29th, 2010
Alan P. Medinger, former Executive Director of Exodus International (the office’s title has now been changed to President) and former Executive Director of Baltimore/Washington-based Regeneration Ministry passed away on Monday morning. He is survived by his wive, Willa, two daughters and a son, and several grandchildren.
Medinger is probably best known for his book, Growth into Manhood: Resuming the Journey, in which he recounts a theory of homosexuality which is essentially identical to Joseph Nicolosi’s reparative therapy model. This model puts forward the claim that homosexuality is the result of poor parental bonds and same-gender modeling, particularly with the father. According to that theory, the lack of a male bond with the father results in a “gender identity deficit” with a resulting “inner sense of emptiness.” In Growth into Manhood, Medinger refers to his own homosexuality as being the result of specific “choices” he made in childhood:
For me, a couple of those factors were decisions that I made quite early in life. I have a vivid memory of lying in bed one night as a young boy, listening to my parents fight, and saying to myself quite smugly, “They can never hurt me. No one will ever hurt me.” I believe that I made a decision that night to never be emotionally vulnerable. As a consequence of that decision, until my conversion years later, I would never be free to truly love anyone.
Medinger claimed to have experienced a sudden, miraculous “healing” from homosexuality on November 26, 1974 as a result of prayer. He started Regeneration in 1979. He was the first Executive Director of Exodus International, and he held that position until 1985.
In Medinger’s writings, he would occasionally reference several of the more unsavory characters in the anti-gay political movement. In Growth into Manhood, he refered to Holocaust revisionist Scott Lively’s book, The Pink Swastika, as source material for evidence of the “super-warrior” type of gay man:
Another type is the man who exalts manhood to the extreme. At the same time, he denigrates womanhood, and as an outgrowth of this, he sees a man (usually a younger man or teenage boy) as a more desirable sexual partner. This type of man seldom shows any deficit in manhood. To the contrary, he may be the warrior or super-man type. This phenomenon was seen in the ancient Greeks and Romans and more recently in the Nazis. There may be an element of love for the younger man who is the object of the older man’s attractions, but the older man seems driven by male idolatry rather than gender emptiness.
The core thesis of Lively’s book is that homosexuality was at the root of the Nazi party, and that the natural consequence of equal rights for LGBT people in society would be the return of violent fascism. This theme, which has been rejected by every reputable historian, is the relentless focus of the entire book.
Medinger also cited discredited “researcher” Paul Cameron, for example, in this Regeneration newsletter of 1994 in which he cited Cameron’s widely discredited “obituary study” to claim that gay men only live, on average, to age 41.