Former reparative therapy leader John Smid marries same-sex partner

John Smid (right) and husband Larry McQueen, displaying their marriage license. Staff Reports

John Smid, the former Executive Director of Love in Action — an ex-gay Christian ministry that purported to “restore those trapped” in homosexuality — has married his same-sex partner in Oklahoma.

John Smid (right) and husband Larry McQueen, displaying their marriage license.

John Smid (right) and husband Larry McQueen, displaying their marriage license.

Smid married Larry McQueen on Sunday, Nov. 16.

The Memphis Flyer reports that Smid has been living as an out gay man for several years, and he’s been in a relationship with McQueen for one year. The couple live in Paris, Texas, where Smid moved from his Memphis home in the summer of 2013.

In 2011, Smid publicly admitted that he is gay, and disavowed the message he preached for years that promised gays they could change: “One cannot repent of something that is unchangeable.”

After leaving Love in Action in 2008, Smid founded Grace Rivers, a fellowship for gay Christians. At the time, he remained married to his wife but they eventually divorced in 2011.

Love in Action was Exodus International’s oldest ex-gay ministry. Exodus ceased operations in June 2013, although its closure had no direct impact on the independent ministries which continue to operate and perform reparative therapy.

Correction: An earlier version of this report incorrectly indicated Smid’s former wife was gay. Smid’s former wife identifies as heterosexual. We regret the error.

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