Christian Counsellor Suspended For Reparative Therapy Suggestion

Country: United Kingdom

Date of incident: May 31, 2011

(ongoing) Lesley Pilkington was suspended by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (“BACP”) for giving therapy to a homosexual man (an under-cover freelance journalist) who pretended to be a Christian wishing to stop practicing homosexuality. A key witness has been threatened by homosexual activists, causing hearing to be adjourned.

Lesley Pilkington faces being suspended from the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) after complaints made by a homosexual journalist. In May 2011, a tribunal declared that her efforts to help homosexuals leave the “gay lifestyle” was “reckless,” “disrespectful,” “dogmatic” and “unprofessional.” Pilkington is appealing the decision and has defended “reparative therapy,” saying, “I am deeply concerned that the privileged and confidential relationship between a counselor and her patient will be undermined by a journalist seeking a sensationalist story without any substance.” She added, “Reparative Therapy is a valid therapy that many people want and it should not be damaged by irresponsible reporting. The hearing is still subject to an appeal.” The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) found Lesley Pilkington guilty of professional malpractice in January after she let her “personal preconceived views about gay lifestyle and sexual orientation … affect her professional relationship in a way that was prejudicial.” The counsellor, with over 20 years of experience, is defending herself against a formal complaint by Patrick Strudwick, a homosexual journalist who went undercover to secretly record two therapy sessions with her by strapping a recording device under his clothing. Mr. Strudwick published an account of the sessions in The Independent has since received the award of journalist of the year by the homosexual rights organisation Stonewall. Shortly before the hearing, the BACP required all Witness Statements to be passed to them with contact details, and to Mr Strudwick. Immediately after supplying the statements, an expert witness received several menacing phone calls, threats and intimidation, telling the witness not to attend. Lesley Pilkington called for the BACP to adjourn the case and in the interests of maintaining the professional standards and integrity of the professional body, to call in the police to fully investigate what could lead to criminal charges. Mrs Pilkington met the journalist at a Christian conference.  Mr Strudwick told the counsellor that he wanted to leave his ‘homosexual lifestyle’ and wanted help to change his behaviour. The counsellor confirmed that she would be happy to meet with him but only within a Christian counselling context and he agreed. Shortly after the conference, and still acting undercover, the journalist contacted her and said that he thought they were on the same wavelength and asked to meet with her. Throughout the two therapy sessions, the undercover journalist repeatedly told the counsellor that he wanted to leave his homosexual lifestyle and that he wanted to change his behaviour. However, after the sessions, he lodged a complaint to the BACP alleging that she had failed to respect his homosexuality. Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury along with a number of senior figures, supports Ms Pilkington in a letter co-signed by, among others, the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, the former Bishop of Rochester, and the Rt Rev Wallace Benn, the Bishop of Lewes: “We believe that people who seek, freely, to resolve unwanted same-sex attractions hold the moral right to receive professional assistance. Whether motivated by Christian conscience or other values, clients, not practitioners, have the prerogative to choose the yardstick by which to define themselves. Psychological care for those who are distressed by unwanted same-sex attractions has been shown to yield a range of beneficial client outcomes. Competent practitioners, including those working with biblical Judeo-Christian values, should be free to assist those seeking help."  Sources and further information:
Read here the story on Lifesitenews in June 2011 view.php?id=1231