Catching Up With Michael Johnston
by Kevin O'Leary
(POZ October 1998)
Calling: Ex-gay, preacher
Age: “39 going on 60”
What’s his deal? Johnston says that in 1988 he “left the homosexual lifestyle” to form ex-gay recruiting Kerusso Ministries in Newport News, Vermont.
Slice of life: On National Coming Out Day in October, ACT UP/SF and the Biotic Baking Brigade hit the missionary man in the head with a blueberry pie during his “Coming Out of the Gay Lifestyle” speech in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park.
On cheek-turning: “A reporter asked if I was angry. How could I be? They’re just the kinds of guys I’m trying to reach with my ministry. I’m the Blueberry Martyr.”
On ex-gay groups fluffing up success rates: “Sometimes even I look at the numbers and wonder where they’re from. Some organizations feel they have to prove themselves to the world. It’s not a numbers game.”
And him? “The cocktails are working, the levels are down. I’ve always had a sense that I will be here for the Rapture.”