July 24, 2009

British Churches Performing "Exorcisms" On Gays

We recently linked to the horriffic YouTube video of a "gay exorcism" performed in the United States. Unfortunately, it appears this is also happening in the UK. From Pink News:

According to the Metro, a Pentecostal church in north-west London offers the controversial 'cure'. It is one of hundreds of fundamentalist churches in the UK.

Rev John Ogbe-Ogbeide, who runs the United Pentecostal Ministry in Harrow, said he carried out exorcisms on gays four or five times a year and that the procedure always worked.

He said: "The evil spirits are telling you what's wrong is right, the opposite sex is not attractive."

He cited a recent case where he exorcised a young man who was about to get married but was in love with a man.

Rev Ogbe-Ogbeide added that the procedure could be carried out at any age, as demons could take hold of a person at any time.

Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has called for protest against the practice and a thorough police investigation.

He said: "The exorcism rituals involve the casting out of alleged demons and witches that supposedly possess a gay person's soul and turn them away from heterosexuality.

"There are claims that gay teenagers and young adults are being subjected to exorcisms at the insistence of their parents and pastors, in an attempt to rid them of same-sex attraction.

"The exorcisms can include traumatic emotional scenes where the victims are surrounded by a group of church elders who scream at them to drive out the evil spirits and who sometimes shake their bodies.

"When this is done to youngsters under 18, it is a form of child abuse and the police should intervene to stop it.

"Some gay adults have been pressured into exorcisms by their family members or faith communities. Other victims are people with learning difficulties or mental health problems. They have been preyed upon when they are in a vulnerable state and are not capable of giving fully informed consent."

When a person's self-esteem has been kicked around like a soccer ball, intervention is needed--to protect them from these harmful "exorcists."

You can read the rest of the story at PinkNews.

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