A controversial Christian ministry devoted to changing people "affected by homosexuality" announced Wednesday night that it was shutting its doors after operating for more than three decades.
The announcement by Exodus International came during its religious conference in Irvine and after its President Alan Chambers apologized to members of the gay community for "years of undue judgment by the organization and the Christian Church as a whole," the Florida-based ministry said in a statement.
"I am sorry I didn't stand up to people publicly 'on my side' who called you names.... I am sorry I have communicated that you and your families are less than me and mine," Chambers said in his apology.
"More than anything, I am sorry that so many have interpreted this religious rejection by Christians as God's rejection. I am profoundly sorry that many have walked away from their faith and that some have chosen to end their lives."
Chambers said in a statement that the organization's directors voted to shut down Exodus and start a new ministry that would would work with other churches to create "safe, welcoming and mutually transforming communities."