John Smid

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John J. Smid is the former director of the Memphis, Tennessee ex-gay ministry Love In Action, a position in which he was a leading spokesman for converting homosexuals into heterosexuals.[1] His homosexuality had driven him to leave his wife and children in 1980, but four years after leaving his family, he turned toward the church and to conversion of sexuality, to live life as a heterosexual.[2] In 2011, years after having left his Love In Action post, he stated that he was homosexual, and that he had "never met a man who experienced a change from homosexual to heterosexual."[3]

During his time directing Love In Action, Smid faced controversy, including over the organization's treatment of gay teens in their youth program Refuge.[2] He resigned that position in 2008,[4] and in 2010 apologized for any harm he had caused, noting that his teen program "further wounded teens that were already in a very delicate place in life".[5]

In 2012, Smid self-published a memoir titled Ex'd Out: How I Fired the Shame Committee.[6]


  1. ^ "Ministry seeks to lead away from gay life". Arizona Daily Star. 1997-11-08. Retrieved 2011-10-13. 
  2. ^ a b Julian Borger (2005-08-26). "Straight and narrow: church's 'gay cure'". The Guardian. Retrieved 2011-10-13. 
  3. ^ Wayne Besen (2011-10-12). "Former ‘Ex-Gay’ Activist Admits Gay People Don’t Change". Falls Church News-Press. Retrieved 2011-10-13. 
  4. ^ Herrington, Chris (2008-04-10). "Fly on the Wall". Memphis Flyer. Retrieved 2011-10-13. 
  5. ^ Jason says: (2010-03-30). "Ex-gay leader apologises". Star Observer. Retrieved 2011-10-13. 
  6. ^