Christian group loses grant over gay ‘cures’

An orthodox Christian group which offers a course which can ‘cure’ homosexuality has lots its government subsidy with immediate effect, equality minister Ronald Plasterk told MPs on Thursday.

Evangelical Christian organisation Onze Weg (our way) was awarded a grant of €50,000 in September. The Arnhem-based foundation says it does not want to ‘cure’ gayness because it is not an illness.
However, the organisation does offer a course which ‘can lead to a reduction in homosexual feelings… and in some cases a switch to heterosexuality,’ the minister said in a letter to MPs.
‘The subsidy was meant to raise the social acceptability of homosexuality under orthodox Christians. Of course we cannot support groups which want to help people get rid of their homosexual tendancies,’ he said.
The revelations about the group were made in magazine Revu in December. Revu also claimed another group, RefoAnders, was also trying to ‘cure’ gayness. Plasterk said he had also asked that group for more information.
In total the government gives some €450,000 in grants to eight gay Christian groups, ranging from liberal to fundamentalist, says the Volkskrant. Much of this month goes to boosting the acceptability of gay teachers.

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