Pastor Tom Brock

An anti-gay Lutheran pastor will probably keep his job, despite revelations that he is enrolled in a support group for gay men “struggling” with same-sex celibacy.

Lavender magazine this week published an exposé about notorious Pastor Tom Brock by undercover reporter John Townsend who faked his way into a support programme to get the scoop on the clergyman.

Townsend, who admitted that he had agreed to abide by the programme’s confidentiality and was not honest about being a reporter, has been criticised by some for his deception.

The magazine’s president, Stephen Rocheford, defended his actions, telling AP: “This company has a policy not to out people. The one exception is a public figure who says one thing and does another.”

The article quotes Pastor Brock talking about a recent trip to Europe in the group and admitting: “I fell into temptation. I was weak.”

Brock has actively lobbied against gay relationships and the acceptance of gay clergy in the church.

Last year he claimed that God had struck the Minneapolis Convention Center with a tornado because delegates from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America attending a conference there had approved a “social statement on human sexuality”.

The pastor has been placed on two weeks leave but is expected to be able to return to work at the conservative Hope Lutheran Church because he has sought “treatment” for his same-sex attraction.

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