The dad of Michael Guglielmucci (the man at the center of this), Danny, spoke at length today at his church about some of the back story behind his son’s lie. With the release of a statement by Michael Guglielmucci and Danny Guglielmucci, and more information to come out behind all this, I am able to move on. I still plan to love and enjoy singing to God with the song Healer. I do believe it is an incredibly powerful song that teaches and sings about truth, Biblical truth. Thanks for all your feedback on my first post about this, it has definitely been helpful for us at Sunset in figuring out how to or not to respond to this story.
Certainly each person who knows the story behind all this either decides to be angry with Michael or to extend grace. While I was confused and somewhat hurt when I first heard the story, I now want to extend grace to him. I can only imagine the amount of pain he feels all on his own without anyone else passing judgment. As Christians, we are called to extend grace in the same way that it has been given to us: FREELY.
Now that more information has come out…do you have any new thoughts?
UPDATE: The newspaper providing much of the coverage of this story has added a poll to one of their articles on whether Michael should be forgiven. Less than 40% say yes. I’m sad for Christianity around the world today. We love to accept grace but we rarely give it. Sad sad sad.
Full text of statement issued by Michael Guglielmucci (LINK):
“It is with much pain and sadness that I make this statement today. For over 16 years I have struggled with an addition to adult pornography as a result of this secret life of sin my body would often breakdown. I’d report the cause of my symptoms simply as illnesses and I’ve thrown my life into a ministry for many years trying to compensate for my sin.
I believe that I do love Jesus and I know that he loves me and it is this love along with the prayers of people around the world that bring me to this place of confession. Two years ago, I reported that I was suffering from cancer, the truth is that although I was ill I did not have cancer but was again using the misdiagnosis to hid the lie that I was living. I know in my heart that it is the truth alone that will set me free and this is the reason for my confession. I’ve dishonoured God, my wife, my family and the church and I take full responsibility for my actions and would like to make it very clear that no-one else was in any way aware of my double life.
I’m fully commited to a process of discipline, recovery and restitution and will see this process through to what ever extent is necessary. I am deeply sorry and pray that you will find it in your hearts to forgive me. Currently I am undergoing professional medical assessment and evaluation to help identify and begin to treat the real and much deeper issues. Please continue to pray for my wife and I and my family as we have a long, hard road ahead of us but a road that I’m thankful to God that I’m finally walking.”
Full text of the statement released by Danny Guglielmucci (LINK):
“Today is a very sad day for our family and church family. For many years our son, Michael has suffered from unexplained illnesses. We have been worried as we have seen him suffer and spend periods of time in hospital. Two years ago our lives were totally turned around by the sad news of our sons’ cancer diagnosis. The love and support shown by our local church and all of our many friends around the world helped us get through a very difficult situation.
During the last two years we have experienced the favor of God, his love and grace, and also the constant pain of the possibility of losing a son.
On Tuesday 12th of August we received a call to come and meet with Mike and Amanda but weren’t ready for what we were about to hear. Mike began to share how he has lived a lie for the last 16 years of his life because of addictive behavior he couldn’t break free from. He loved God and would throw himself into prayer, worship, and serving God with full energy and enthusiasm but still couldn’t break free. In September in 2006, Mike had an accident and went to hospital. It was at this time, because of his torment of living a double life, Mike thought he could escape the pain by creating a diversion from his addiction to adult pornography, so he created the cancer scenario. The pain of this addiction was so deep that he started something he couldn’t stop and proceeded on a downward spiral that led to him experiencing pain and suffering that resulted in constant vomiting and many other symptoms of a genuine sufferer.
Sharonne and I witnessed these episodes and pained and wept over his suffering. Michael wrote the song Healer because he wanted God to set him free from his addiction but hid it behind the lie of a fabricated illness. Once he had started down this track he felt he couldn’t stop so he continued to act out this sickness, feeling he had gone too deep into the lie. I can’t begin to tell you how much this is hurting us on the inside. A few weeks ago Mike had a dream of Jesus on the cross looking down on him saying, ‘the truth will set you free’ and so he decided to confess and bring everything out into the open.
I immediately contacted our National Executive and submitted to their advice and council. Church, our family needs your prayers at this time. We are so, so sorry to bring you into this. I have lead you with openness and integrity and declare that we have not lived a lie before you. We fully understand the questions, shock, disbelief and even anger you may feel over this announcement. Please pray for us and we will pray for you. Michael is struggling with a different kind of illness and is receiving professional help and will do so as long as is needed. On the council and advice of our executive and board, after our up and coming Edge conference, we will take time to be with Mike and get him all the professional and spiritual help he needs to come to full recovery.
We have an amazing team. Thank you, executive, board, staff and church, for your love and support. We will do what is right before God and man and see this situation turned around for the glory of God. We love you. “