In a story so full of irony it boggles the mind, former Colorado Springs pastor Ted Haggart has agreed to promote a new film, “The Trials of Ted Haggart,” which documents his 2006 exposure of sexual misconduct and drug involvement by a male prostitute. A few well-placed tears, some hand-wringing, a sympathetic story or two…
Haggart was dismissed from his church and banned from speaking about the situation for two years; a period which is not quite concluded. However, the church in Colorado Springs has recently released him from this restriction so he can “move on” as they have moved on. (Do I smell a large financial contribution hiding under the rug somewhere? Money does make moving on so much easier.)
Haggart apparently failed to complete his “restoration process” that was to help him “heal” but he has recently resumed church speaking engagements in a rural Illinois church, where, predictably, he played the sexually-abused card.
Was he really abused as a child? Who knows – but it’s never an excuse for today’s behavior. We’re supposed to believe his adult behavior is excused because he was sexually abused in second grade? Yet somehow a whole host of the rest of us have been sexually abuse and haven’t turned into sexual deviants and abused God’s trust in a position of authority! Nor have we then bailed out on an accountability and restoration process — but Christendom is letting this man back in the pulpit?
This is blind foolishness — and that is a simple fact, not out-of-bounds judgment. That is judgment as God calls us to judge. Anyone who lets this man behind a pulpit is complicit in blatant ungodliness. Not only has Haggart thwarted God’s justice for his own sin, he has returned to the pulpit where he has no business based on God’s standard for a preacher/pastor, and he is profiting from his sin with this film — whether financially or merely through recognition and association. It cannot be without notice that the film is directed by Alexandra Pelosi, daughter of U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and is set to air next month on HBO.