Maclean’s Magazine has an article about Wendy Gritter and New Direction: Quietly ahead of the curve
Gritter was optimistic when she started ministering at New Direction. She attended an Exodus International conference in the ’90s and found the testimonies of alleged ex-gays quite moving. But her optimism soon wavered when she realized that the majority of gay Christians she knew were carving out a third option: They were leaving the church and living openly gay lives. “Reorientation clearly wasn’t working. As Christians you say, ‘Well, God can do anything,’ but it wasn’t looking like God was doing that.” She was also troubled by what the therapy was doing. “There is a deep pain in knowing people were traumatized—that people were taught to hate themselves.”
Gritter was tormented. She woke up frequently in the middle of night. “I would cry out to God and I would say, ‘If I’m wrong, please tell me—I’ll turn 180.’ ” When God didn’t “write a message on the wall,” Gritter wrote her own; she married her heart and her mind. In 2003, she stopped practising conversion ministry and, in 2008, she gave a speech before Exodus International—Alan Chambers included—calling for an end to reorientation therapy and, like her own Canadian group, New Direction, an abstention from the gay-rights debate in politics.
From her 2008 apology to the GLBT community:
I want to begin by saying I’m sorry. I’m sorry for the pain that some of those who follow this site have experienced from leaders like me and ministries like the one I lead. I’m sorry that some of you connected with this site who identify as Christian have had your faith questioned and judged. I’m sorry there is a felt need for a site like XGW. I’m sorry that it feels like legitimate concerns have not been listened to. I am sorry for the arrogance that can come across from leaders like me.
I suppose I’m not what some would assume to be your typical ex-gay leader. I’m not gay, not ex-gay, not ex-ex-gay. Not male. Not Southern Baptist. Not Republican. Not even American. I’m a Gen X postmodern whose perspectives are, depending on who you talk to, too liberal or too conservative, unorthodox or too orthodox, heretical or vibrantly Christ-centered.
It remains unfortunate that Exodus Global Alliance, a ‘pray away the gay’ reparative/reorientation therapy ministry is head-quartered in Canada. More on the harm done world wide by Exodus Global Alliance adherents.