A friend of the evangelical speculates that KC isn’t "the San Francisco of the Midwest.”

Minister in Sex Scandal Used Kansas City for His Alias 

A friend of the evangelical speculates that KC isn’t "the San Francisco of the Midwest.”

In Colorado Springs, Colorado, church types have been hiding in their hymnals since a male prostitute accused the Rev. Ted Haggard, president of the National Association of Evangelicals, of paying him for sex.

But what caught our attention is that the prostitute claims Haggard was using an alias of “Art,” a married man from Kansas City, Missouri.

We called the Rev. Donald Armstrong, pastor of Grace Episcopal and Saint Stephen’s Church in Colorado Springs. Armstrong knows Haggard and believes his friend is innocent, but he agreed to give us an out-of-towner’s perspective on the alleged alias.

How do you know Haggard?

We are both pastors. His building holds 10,000 people. Ours is a classic Gothic Church. We’ve shared for wedding parties from his church. We’ve also visited and gone out to lunch.

Is Kansas City considered a gay-married-guy hotbed?

I don’t know. I never hear of anything like that. Kansas City is a pretty normal kind of place. When I think about Kansas City, I think barbecue. I don’t think anything other than healthy, Midwestern people. Like anywhere else, there are probably gay people in Kansas City. But I would not consider it the San Francisco of the Midwest or something.

Do you think gay and married is a good cover for a church guy?

In the Episcopal Church, they use this initials G-L-B-T-G or something like that. If you have bisexual people, they are probably, if anything else, married with a relationship out of the marriage with someone of the same sex. But there again, that’s true all around the world.

So why would anyone pick Kansas City?

The person was only trying to deflect where they are from. Or that the person is making up the story. This [accusation] doesn’t seem like a proper thing to me. Its vicinity to the election makes it suspicious

If it turns out to be true, could Haggard go through a make-you-straight church conversion program?

I call that the “play them straight” kind of theology. That’s sort of a funny thing. If someone is struggling with something – with temptations -- certainly they can come to the church. And it’s a community that understands temptation and tries to follow what God commands rather than give in to its own temptation.

So KC isn’t gay, huh?

No, I can’t imagine. It’s just a healthy Midwestern city with normal people. I don’t put that even in the radar. I don’t think people will see Kansas City as being any gayer than other places. From Colorado Springs, the next stop [east] is Kansas City. A lot of the kids [at my church] go to KU. There’s just sort of a cross-fertilization between the two places. I hope this shows that people actually think quite highly of Kansas City. The Plaza is a cool area to go to and hang out.

It's unclear how the Rev. Ted Haggard picked Kansas City for his alias. But he could've spotted this recent profile of Kansas City on here!, the gay television network.

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