Controversial 'gay-conversion' conference coming to San Diego

Posted at 8:23 AM, Jun 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-15 11:23:46-04

On Thursday, the LGBT community is coming together to oppose a controversial religious conference coming to San Diego. They'll be joined by several San Diego religious and city leaders, also opposed to the event.

It's a conference organized by the Restored Hope Network, who's mission is to help people who want to overcome sinful sexual desires, like being homosexual.

Online, the group says the weekend will include biblical teaching, workshops, and stories from people who've struggled with sexual attraction and were transformed.

Rev. Dan Koeshall, Pastor of the Metropolitan Community Church of San Diego, says he's a survivor of this very practice, undergoing conversion therapy 30 years ago.

"After years of therapy, from learning how to stuff my feelings and emotions and the damage this did to my psyche and self-esteem, I was able to finally realize God loved me for exactly who I was and I was not a mistake, but I was God's miracle," said Rev. Koeshall.

Councilmember Chris Ward will also be at the event opposing the conference.

"Disgusted. Again, this is San Diego, we are an inclusive community, this is not consistent with the values we share here," said Ward.

Ward says conversion therapy is illegal in California. He believes Restored Hope Network will only be having a conference, not actually performing any therapy. Ward and many others believe it is an abusive, traumatic and ineffective practice.

A press conference and vigil opposed to the conference will be held on Thursday at 5 p.m. at St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral.

The conference begins on Friday and is being held at City View Church.

10News reached out to Restored Hope Network for comment but no one was available.