January 27th, 2009
11:24 PM ET

On the Radar: Ted Haggard’s Road to Redemption

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/CRIME/01/27/colorado.church.haggard/art.new.life.cnn.jpg caption="Rev. Ted Haggard was fired from New Life Church after allegations about a prostitute and drug use arose in 2006."]

Cate Vojdik
AC360° Writer

It's been a long road to redemption for Ted Haggard - and now a new speed bump is looming.

Not so long ago, Haggard was fondly known as Pastor Ted to his congregation in Colorado Springs. He was the popular founder of the New Life Church and a spiritual superstar in the conservative Christian community; in 2005 Time magazine named him one of the Top 25 most influential evangelicals in America.

His rising star crashed in November 2006, when a male prostitute went public about his alleged trysts with Haggard.

Flash forward to January 2009. Haggard is making the media rounds, heavily promoting an HBO documentary that premieres this Thursday. (Alexandra Pelosi, the daughter of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, is the director.) The film traces Haggard's time in exile and his attempts to rebuild his life. Not to mention his curious characterizations of his sexuality.

Enter stage left: an unexpected fly in the ointment. In recent days, a former church volunteer at New Life has gone public with his story. His name is Grant Haas, and he says Haggard performed a sex act in front of him and sent him illicit text messages. Turns out that Haas and the megachurch reached a settlement years ago that included a confidentiality agreement. Some would call it hush money. Church officials don't see it that way. At any rate, Haas is talking and we're listening. Tomorrow we'll hear his side of the story.. in his own words.

We'll also have full coverage of tomorrow's House vote on President Obama's $825-billion economic stimulus measure.. plus all the other news of the day.

See you at 10 p.m. ET.. and don't be shy about dropping us a line.

Filed under: 360° Radar • Cate Vojdik
soundoff (One Response)
  1. Pat Canada

    I can still see Haggard sitting beside his wife in his SUV full of remorse and apologies. I didn't believe him then and don't now. I'm sick and tired of these sacrilegious Men using God as a Shield, God's House as a shelter to lure young innocent souls into their temple to use them as sacrificial lambs to fullfill their insatiable, repulsive, passion. Chuch Leaders should also be held accountable.

    January 28, 2009 at 8:45 am |