A Past Student
I would first of all like to say Thank You. Thank You for so many things and for so many reasons. I was one of your students at RBTC Perth in 1983 & 84. I still feel extremely privileged to have had the opportunity to study at Rhema alongside your daughter-in-law and your son-in-law. Having a background in the Catholic religion.
Rhema turned my life around and gave me hope. Through you and your wife’s ministry I learned a hunger for study of the scripture that I had never known before. I did what you taught “never just listen to what you heard from the pulpit. But, go back to the source and find out what it actually says for yourself.” I actually believe that I am still alive today because of my time at RBTC.
I was one of the 20yr old students who attended New Day Ministries under Ps Phil Howell. I was also very lucky to have had a good friend in your Oldest son who I enjoyed working with in Children’s church on occasional Sundays back in Stirling St.
I eventually returned to the Catholic church, initially to become a priest, but eventually started a ministry under the auspices of the Archbishop teaching and preaching the message I had learned at Bible school. This period of my life is littered with some wonderful successes. But, sadly, it is tarnished by betrayal and pain from associates whom I thought I could trust.
I went to New Day, having left the Catholic church because I believed that I could get help to overcome my sexuality. I was trying to find healing from what I had been brought up to believe was a sin that set me apart and at times I felt like I was the only one going through this struggle. I knew plenty of people who had simply, what I perceived as, given up and accepted homosexuality as a lifestyle. But, I just wanted to be ‘normal’.
I saw my sexuality as a problem in my teens and twenties. I spent 12 years being involved with different programmes and looking for any method that would help me escape my awful sin. I didn’t get to finally come out and accept my sexuality until I was in my thirties.
Initially I was caught up in the euphoria of no longer lying to myself as well as to my family and friends. Initially I was around some people who led me to believe that I could be both Gay and a Christian. However, as I went on to EnglishTeaching at Hight school and was sent away from my support group into a Bretheren dominated wheatbelt town I became despondent, depressed and even suicidal as I felt more and more distance between myself and God.
I have at times felt that I wanted to turn to God, I still had my love for him and I also couldn’t deny the things I had personally witnessed in my own life and ministry. I had often tried attending meetings such as the MCC in Perth but when it would come to the message I would struggle as people took pieces of scripture, completely out of context, and attempted to twist them into a personal idea foreign from its origins.
I got to the point where I would use my training at Bible College to be able to tear down people’s arguments against homosexuality. I would be used by friends as a reference as I would even say “At least I know what weapons they are going to use against us.” referring to the Born Again poofter bashers. However, I didn’t have the knowledge I personally needed to deal with the fateful 7 or 8 passages that are usually used to bash GLBTI people over the head with
It was only 18 months ago I read AVB’s book and then early this year on one of my visits to Sydney that I got the opportunity to catch up with AVB. Progressively over the past 18 months I have been drawing closer and closer in my relationship with God and even more recently have been sensing that I may even have a ministry in the future. Time will tell.
I’ve been listening to Old Hagin and Copeland Tapes (actually I’ve been transfering them to MP3) I can see that there are places where is some clash. But, I am also aware that the promises remain the same.
I am writing my personal journey as a book that I hope will help Gay Christians and other people of Faith.
I hope you are well. Additionally my thoughts and prayers are with your Son and daughter-in-law as he recovers.
Love and Many Thanks
BTW. I have read “From Faith to Reason”, I was one of those on the floor in the all night session [url=http://www.freedom2b.org/modules/smileys/packs/Roving/tongue.png
hey Graham…….nice to see you on the forum.