August 10th, 2010
10:38 AM ET
Alan Chambers’ opposition to Prop 8 isn’t political. It’s personal.
Chambers is the president of Exodus International, a nonprofit “ex-gay” ministry that promises freedom from homosexuality. He is also “ex-gay”– a married father of two children who says he’s abandoned homosexuality.
Chambers sighed when asked his reaction to last week’s controversial court decision. A judge ruled that California's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage, known as Proposition 8, violated the constitutional rights of same-sex couples.
“It’s disappointing that a judge would rule against the will of the people,” says Chambers, author of "Leaving Homosexuality." “That’s the greatest tragedy.”
For 34 years, Exodus has told gay and lesbians that they can be “delivered” from homosexuality through faith in Christ, professional counseling and support groups.
But how will groups like Exodus fare if fewer Americans believe that homosexuality is a sin, and if gay marriage becomes an option?
Chambers acknowledged that “our culture is changing” and said more people are abandoning a biblical view of homosexuality.
Does he think gay marriage is inevitable?
“It certainly seems so,” Chambers says. “The jury is still out and there are certainly areas where I see a tendency for more rights for gay and lesbian people. But I also see that there’s still a fight among American people so it’s hard to know.”
Though there seems to be more acceptance of gay and lesbian people in popular culture, Chambers says demand for Exodus ministry has not declined.
“Our calls are increasing,” he says. “Our ministries say we’re busier than ever.”
He says the Prop 8 ruling shows something else: More Americans are accepting the humanity of gay and lesbian people.
“We’re entering a time when we are more compassionate and loving toward people who deserve our compassion,” he says, “and that’s gay and lesbian people.”
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team and frequent posts from religion scholar and author Stephen Prothero.