“Ex-gay” ministry seeks to “cure” LGBT community in the Highlands (UPDATE)

Last June, LEO Weekly covered the practices of “ex-gay” “conversion therapy” ministries who seek to “cure” gay people from acting out on their completely natural sexual desires, including one in Louisville called Abba’s Delight (yes, that’s really their name). We noted the story of one Louisville man who was tormented by such “therapy,” which is about as sick as you can imagine.

Today a reader sent along this photo of a new billboard currently on the corner of Bardstown Rd. and Grinstead Dr. in the liberal Highlands neighborhood, courtesy of Abba’s Delight:

abbas delight

Note that this billboard also happens to be in Louisville’s most densely LGBT-populated neighborhood, and just a stone’s throw away from *three gay bars: Chill BAR Highlands, Nowhere Bar and Big Bar. We doubt the location of the billboard is a coincidence. Abba’s Delight founder Daniel Mingo did not immediately return our call to ask him about this placement, but we’ll let you know if he does.

Here’s what Fairness Campaign director Chris Hartman told LEO about Abba’s Delight and their new Highlands billboard:

It is sad and shameful that Abba’s Delight, an ex-gay ministry, is still trying to peddle their harmful, failed wares in Louisville. And to do so across from a successful, open, accepting, and diverse establishment, like Nowhere Bar, hints of a particularly degenerate desperation.

With more than 90% of people who have been through ministries like Abba’s claiming they have been harmed by the program, and nearly 85% of participants saying that harm still affects them today, it’s time to shut the program down.

No business I know that sells increased depression and suicide rates among its participants and leaves many with PTSD experiences is
successful. Abba’s Delight and programs like it are a straight up sham–don’t buy the snake oil.

**** UPDATE ****

Daniel Mingo, the director of Abba’s Delight, sent us this statement about the placement of the billboard:

“The selection of that specific location for the billboard was based on availability.  I am aware that the Highlands area of Louisville is heavily gay populated, but I was not aware of the billboard’s proximity to any gay bars.  I am aware of only one gay bar in the city, and the only reason I know of that one is because it was across the street from a former employer’s office.  Having walked away from homosexuality over 20 years ago, the whereabouts of gay bars in Louisville is not something with  which I have stayed aware.”

Right, right.

*Story updated to add that Chill BAR Highlands is also in that location, even closer to the billboard than Big Bar and Nowhere Bar.

16 Comments

  1. Highlands resident
    Posted February 13, 2014 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    $5 to the first person who goes up there and spray paints “Not everyone who is straight is happy.”

  2. James Oslin
    Posted February 13, 2014 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    I’d twirl in there like a DANCING QUEEN and tell them that they are the DISSILLUSIONed ones and that I’m already AS GOOD AS NEW and that I knew I was gay cause I SAW IT IN THE MIRROR and I LET THE MUSIC SPEAK! When they ask “DOES YOUR MOTHER KNOW?” I’d tell them MY MAMA SAID MAMMA MIA and that LOVE ISN’T EASY (BUT IT SURE IS HARD ENOUGH) for us straights too so let love be THE NAME OF THE GAME! I’d tell them how I love when a man gives me KISSES OF FIRE and I do the same as I ask him to “LAY ALL YOUR LOVE ON ME”!! And when they keep going ON AND ON AND ON about marriage being ONE MAN, ONE WOMAN I’d just say “RING RING, pick up the clue phone, cause PEOPLE NEED LOVE and it’s MY LOVE, MY LIFE! I’m the winner and you know what they say: THE WINNER TAKES IT ALL!!”

  3. Rod Thomas
    Posted February 13, 2014 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    There are three gay bars near this sign. The third is Chill Bar which is the closest.

  4. Clay Howard
    Posted February 13, 2014 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

    I participated in a Ministry that said that they could “pray the gay away” and almost committed suicide. Thank God I’ve realized that God loves me just the way I am.

  5. Dave Siefker
    Posted February 13, 2014 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

    Equality will cure this problem.

  6. Robert Major
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    Time to start a fundraiser for some advertising of our own eh?

  7. Blue Michael
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QJtjqLUHYoY

  8. Blue Michael
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    ^^When did you decide to become straight?^^

  9. Joshua C Lewis
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    Leo, I have not ever thought baf about your magazine but I am reconsidering it. I would have not noticed the hate being displayed. From what ppl from Facebook says you may have lost more than just me.

  10. Steve Magruder
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    Apparently, people who run such operations insist that homosexuality is a choice.

    I’m here to tell them: If you think homosexuality is a choice, you’re a bisexual by definition (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

    I normally offer constructive dialogue on issues, but frankly, I would indeed cheer on the defacement, total destruction or otherwise removal of this vicious, inhumane sign. I would further encourage citizen action against the company that allowed this sign to be installed.

  11. Jen Cat
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    What’s the cure for being an asshole?

  12. natalie hofer
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    I would be disgusted to see this anywhere but especially in our own Highlands neighborhood. Looks like some division of CBS owns the billboard company. Shame on CBS for even allowing this advertising.
    https://www.cbsoutdoor.com/contact.aspx?marketName=KY%20-%20Louisville

  13. Highlands Homo
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=740446249312739&set=a.373880549302646.92319.373810202643014&type=1&theater&notif_t=photo_comment

    Nailed it.

  14. Ken
    Posted February 15, 2014 at 10:27 pm | Permalink

    Two observations:
    1. The sign maker doesn’t seem to say All gay people are unhappy. He/she just says some are not happy and there seems to be an offer to help. I do not see a problem with that.
    2. The blog writer wrote of “their completely natural sexual desires”. Can I ask what kind of sexual desires the writer of the blog would consider ‘un-natural’ and why. This would seem like a fair question to ask the blogger.

  15. Puhn Tang
    Posted February 17, 2014 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands.

  16. google
    Posted August 1, 2014 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Hey just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the images aren’t loading
    correctly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue.
    I’ve tried it in two different web browsers
    and both show the same outcome.

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