An Oklahoma gay couple said they were tricked into attending a church service where they were attacked by the congregation, with one being held down while being prayed for to be made “straight”.
Sean Cormie’s family had been asked repeatedly by his family to attend a service at their church in Blackwell, Oklahoma and bring along his boyfriend, Gary Gardner.
Cormie told News 4: “I wanted to go to church to make my mom proud and make her happy.”
But he did not expect what happened next.
The service was normal but at the end, something unexpected happened. Cormie said as 12 to 15 congregants circled around Gardner and himself, their prayer growing louder. Meanwhile, they said the pastor began making statements against homosexuality.
“‘It’s a sin, it’s an abomination, you need to realize, wake up, and see it for a sin,’” Cormie said.
The prayer got louder and louder until the two men felt so humiliated, they got up to leave. But Gardner was shuffled out of the building alone.
“They held me down, pinned me down, and I’m crying” Cormie also said he was punched in the face. “I was just crying ‘mercy, mercy.'”
When they finally let him up, he went to the Blackwell Police Department to file a report. The police chief confirmed the incident is being investigated but wouldn’t comment further.
Pastors Bill and Tami McKissick said in a statement, “On behalf of First Assembly we have been asked by the media to respond to the allegations that have been made. This began as a family matter that escalated. Our church would never condone restraint of any person unless they were engaged in violent activity. There is much more to this incident, and we are cooperating fully with law enforcement to hopefully bring all of the facts to light as a rush to judgment is not in anyone’s best interest.”
Cormie has said that he wants the people involved to suffer the ramifications of their actions.