Former Ex-gay Leader – Veronica Canning

//Former Ex-gay Leader – Veronica Canning

Former Ex-gay Leader – Veronica Canning

Vonnie Pitts (Veronica Canning) Former Christian City Church Pastor and Living Waters Leader

I first heard of the ‘Living Waters’ ex-gay program early 1991. As a pastor on the leadership team of Christian City Church Brookvale (in New South Wales, Australia), I arranged to set up the program in our church to help those struggling with homosexuality. As heterosexuals, myself and two other pastors from the church spent 4 months going through the tapes and manual provided in order to be trained. We then took 3 lesbians and 2 gay men through the program over a 6 month period. It was quite intense. I supported them in their struggles and as we worked through the teaching, we believed they had honestly tried very hard to come out the other end ‘straight’. When we reached the final week I asked the girls what they felt had been achieved. None of them felt the program had changed their sexual orientation. The guys who were working the program finished with similar results.

We looked at additional resources like Elijah House Counselling as a way of bringing more healing into the ‘Living Waters’ Program. There were many at Christian City Church who heard about the program and wanted to join but I was already beginning to have serious doubts about the programs success. It became apparent that anyone who claimed to be ‘cured’ had just gone into denial about his or her sexuality.

At this time, I began my own research into the causes of homosexuality and found there was mounting evidence that sexual orientation is determined in the womb. Now I have absolutely no doubt that homosexuals are born gay and don’t need to change. If I were to see any of the people that I took through the ‘Living Waters’ program again, I would say sorry. My intentions were to help you through your struggle but I acted in ignorance.

Read statements of others who worked with people with ‘ unwanted same sex attraction ‘ here  

About the Author:

Anthony Venn-Brown
Anthony Venn-Brown is one of Australia’s foremost commentators on faith and sexuality. His best-selling autobiography 'A Life of Unlearning – a preacher’s struggle with his homosexuality, church and faith', details his journey from being one of the first in the world to experience religious gay conversion therapy, becoming a married, high profile preacher in Australia's growing mega-churches, such as Hillsong, to living as an openly gay man. Anthony was the co-founder and former leader of Freedom2b. He is an educator and consultant on LGBT/faith issues and leader in deconstructing the ex-gay/reparative/conversion therapy myth. Anthony is the founder and CEO of Ambassadors & Bridge Builders International. Anthony has been recognised on a number of occassions for his contribution and impact including being twice voted one of 'The 25 Most Influential Gay and Lesbian Australians’.

Leave A Comment