FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 26, 2004
Contact: Wayne Besen
AUTHOR CALLS ON EX-GAY LEADER TO EXPLAIN INVOLVEMENT WITH BIZARRE, BACKWOODS DEMON DELIVERANCE CULT
Stephen Bennett’s Association With Demon Group Highlights The Weird Techniques Used By Extremist Ex-Gay Leaders, Says Wayne Besen
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.
-- Author Wayne Besen today called on ex-gay spokesperson Stephen Bennett to explain his controversial ties to a backwoods cult that specializes in relieving people of "demon torment". Bennett’s odd association with Northwest Deliverance Ministries in Albany, Ore. belies the mainstream image he often tries to present to the media. http://www.northwestdeliverance.com
"Stephen Bennett should come clean and explain his intimate relationship with a bizarre fringe group," said Wayne Besen, author of Anything But Straight: Unmasking the Scandals and Lies Behind the Ex-Gay Myth. "This weird affiliation contradicts Bennett’s studied efforts to appear rational and mainstream when talking to the media. What next, we’ll find out that Bennett believes snake handling cures people of their homosexuality?"
Bennett, a self-described former cocaine dealer, was scheduled to speak this week at a Northwest Deliverance Ministries conference titled, "Hope & Deliverance For Homosexuality". The event was to include a "School of Deliverance and laying on of hands with Pastor Corey Pritchett." At the last minute, for unspecified reasons, the conference was rescheduled for 2005.
Bennett claims he is a guest columnist for World Net Daily
and he is the gay Special Issues Editor for The American Family Association
. According to Bennett, he "frequently speaks as a national spokesperson on the homosexual issue for Concerned Women for America
"These far right wing political groups need to clarify if they agree that homosexuality is caused by demons and can be cured by exorcisms," said Besen. "I am always amazed of how these groups never want to discuss the methods in which change supposedly occurs. It seems they are embarrassed by their backwards, medieval methods."
According to his highly-commercial website, http://www.sbministries.org/index.html
, Bennett, known as the new John Paulk, has appeared in a number of media venues including: CBS Television, Fox News Channel, Fox News Live, The O'Reilly Factor, CNN, The 700 Club, Billy Graham's Decision Today, Concerned Women for America, TBN, CBN, Sean Hannity, Geraldo Rivera and Mike Gallagher.