DETROIT – A Michigan pastor, who has publicly railed against gay marriage, has resigned from his post after being outed for soliciting sex from men through a smartphone app geared toward gay, bisexual and bi-curious men.
The Rev. Matthew Makela made the announcement on Sunday in a letter to the congregation at St. John’s Lutheran Church and School in Midland after he was outed by the gay and lesbian entertainment website Queerty.
His resignation became effective Monday.
According to screenshots obtained by Queerty, Makela was soliciting sex from men on the app Grindr.
The married father of five reportedly confirmed the authenticity of the screenshots to Queerty but declined to comment.
The article also included a screenshot of a Facebook post opposing gay marriage that Makela wrote in September that read:
“Read these words this morning: ‘Long before gay marriage was part of our national discussion, natural marriage did not always reflect God’s will of love and submission. Divorce became common, love in marriage grew colder and children were not always seen as a blessing. Changing the culture begins with changing our culture of marriage and family, taking the marriage union with the utmost seriousness and welcoming children in our church.’ AMEN!”
Makela told Queerty that he resigned from his position after the story surfaced and that his wife and senior pastor were aware of his Grindr activity.
In a letter posted on the St. John’s church website, the church’s senior pastor, the Rev. Daniel Kempin tells parishioners that Makela “has acknowledged that there was sin and repentance, and I have testified that there is indeed forgiveness through the same Lord who forgives all our sins.”
He goes on to say, “To make matters worse, though, the details of sin that have been kept confidential are being posted online by those who seek to do harm to the Makela family and to St. John’s.”
Makela’s bio was removed from the church’s website Monday afternoon.