Ex-gay activist Stephen Bennett dropped off our radar screen last year when he got a real job as a Realtor and allowed his website to go dead.
Now he’s back. His ministry web site skips over the whole real-estate shebang and maintains that “SBM is a full-time evangelistic and educational ministry” while begging for donations of $5 per month.
Bennett has always exhibited a sizable ego, and for 2011 Bennett has a vision to match: A grand 10th-anniversary ministry conference in the thriving metropolis of Shelton, Connecticut, led by “many special guest speakers” that he can’t name at a location that he doesn’t disclose.
Perhaps the conference will be at the Central Baptist Church pictured here? Does this church really host regular sermons by Bennett and nobody else? And why is the parking lot empty? Is the empty parking lot representative of his congregation, or the number of people who knew him when he says he was gay, or the desolate life of an ex-gay minister who is ostracized by the remainder of the ex-gay activist community?
To dispel any doubts about his popularity and the likely size of his conference, Bennett supplies what appears to be a stock photo of a crowded auditorium — seemingly altered to show a giant photoshopped SBM ministry splash screen on the stage and a photoshopped banner for his antigay parental support group on the side wall.
We strongly encourage
suckers believers to send $169 to Stephen and wife Irene to attend the conference and report back. Tell Bennett’s social-media sidekick Janet Hensley that we said hello. (Hensley and I had some encounters long ago, when I edited Ex-Gay Watch.)
Addendum: Noted for future reference: Stephen’s personal, realtor-friendly blog hasn’t seen activity since December 2009. His ex-gay blog is current. Here’s Stephen on Twitter and Facebook.