Speaking Grace and Truth
With the right mix of plain spoken truth, God-inspired wisdom, and personal gentleness, Kent Paris has inspired audiences across the U.S. and and Canada to make a difference and offer hope to a confused and hurting world. He speaks from a place of hard-won, personal truths about the homosexual lifestyle. He speaks to organizations of all faith backgrounds including colleges and universities, churches of every size, campus ministry events, for clergy and national campus ministry leadership training conferences, teen and college conventions, and national conferences through workshops and one day seminars.
"One of my favorite things to do spend two or more days with a local congregation where I am able to speak in the church worship service(s), speak to the teens and college age youth, provide a workshop or two, and have a debriefing & Q&A with the church staff/leadership" says Kent. "One of the most important things we are doing right now is equipping the next generation of church members and leaders. I want to teach parents, youth leaders, and other adults how to give those in their midst who struggle with sexual brokenness or gender confusion the love and support they need to grow in Christ."
Comments Following Speaking Events
“Kent’s story is a mind-blowing saga of abuse, brokenness, and redemption... As a pastor of a church that looks to Scripture to define the boundaries of our sexuality, I have looked for those who teach on the subject of same sex attraction with the balance of grace and truth. Kent is one of those faithful brothers. Following his message, many felt free to approach him with questions and fears. He is a counselor with a shepherd’s heart.”
- Shawn Craig, Lead Pastor, Crosspoint Church (St. Louis, MO) and member of CCM group Phillips, Craig and Dean
“Kent, I think every church ought to spend a weekend with you like we did. The response has been so positive and good. The issue of same sex attraction is very confusing to people: the families want to know “What happened, how did we lose a child to the homosexual lifestyle? Is this permanent, and how do we act as a family now?” The Christians who struggle with the temptation want to know “Why did this happen to me, and what does it mean about who I am or what God thinks about me?” The church is trying to figure out how to help those already affected and also how to protect those not yet seduced by the lie. And then there is the hideous twin subject that always accompanies this issue; it also begs for attention, “How do we address the sexual abuse that is so rampant in the lives of individuals?”
Kent in all of these areas your own story, your grasp of Scripture, your counseling experience and your presence were very helpful to us. Because you were here we have better dialogues going with people, and those dialogues have a clearer direction for families and all those affected. Thanks for the time and investment with us. Please partner with churches whenever you can. Please continue to develop the additional resources that help parents and congregations with both the philosophical understanding of these issues and the practical conversational guidelines that such a sensitive subject requires. And please feel free to use our experience with you as an encouragement to other congregations to schedule and include you within their ministry. Thanks again for the friendship and the partnership. May God give freedom to the captives.”
- Randy Gariss, Preaching Minister, College Heights Christian Church, Joplin, MO.
“When we confirmed Kent Paris as guest speaker the first weekend of October, we knew he would do a good job – we just didn’t know how good. His message was extraordinary! He pulled no punches in defining the sin of homosexuality and the evils of the gay agenda, yet he did it in such a gracious way. I would have felt at ease inviting someone who was involved in the gay lifestyle to that service. They may not have agreed with Kent, but I think they would have given him a fair hearing because of his irenic delivery. The power of Kent’s message is largely due to his powerful and personal testimony. I could say the same things about the biblical view of homosexuality from the pulpit, but Kent has a unique credibility that sets him apart. I could not give a higher recommendation to any church that wants to hear a bold, Biblical, and loving message concerning the issue of homosexuality.”
-Bob Hentrich, Senior Minister, Chillicothe Christian Church, Chillicothe, IL
“We certainly live in a time where clarity about Homosexuality is needed. Let me tell you, I am so glad we had Kent speak a couple of Sundays ago...what a perfect message for our times! He began by communicating with insight and frankness about today’s homosexual movement. Then, he followed with his own story in a riveting manner that really grabbed our attention and engaged our emotions. When Kent met people in our foyer after the services, he had a long line of folks wanting to talk...about family members, friends and God’s hope and grace. I saw some tears and I heard lots of words of appreciation for Kent’s message and his manner of engaging people. He blessed our church tremendously! Pastors, your people need to hear the clear, powerful and compassionate message about the issue of homo-sexuality that Kent Paris delivers. I recommend him completely and whole- heartedly!”
- Lee Robison, Minister Sarasota Christian Church (Sarasota, Florida)
“Kent Paris brings an incredible perspective to the discussion of homosexuality. He begins with his personal testimony, which is both enlightening and disarming. He shares a history of the debate which is both informative and eye-opening. And he challenges both the church as a whole and each Christian individually to stand strong on a foundation of love and grace. No matter what perspective you bring to a session with Kent, you will leave challenged.”
-Jason Wetherholt, Family Life Minister, Windsor Road Christian Church (Champaign, IL)
“I have known Kent Paris for a long time, and consider him a good friend. His seminar reminded me of his thoroughness when dealing with a difficult subject. What I have appreciated even more than his thoroughness has been his heart for hurting people. His challenge to the church to be a "Means of Grace" to those affected by homosexuality is a timely and important message.”
- Jeff Higginson (Ministry Coordinator, Inner City Mission Springfield, IL)
“Our people were spellbound as they heard Kent's personal testimony about a physically and emotionally abused child who grew into a confused and acting out teen who was into drugs, cults and illicit sex including relationships with other males. He did not over-dramatize his story but did present it in a way that opened the eyes of those who were unaware of the kind of childhood Kent experienced. Then he shared how he came to know Jesus Christ as Savior and how he determined to give himself over completely to follow him as Lord. He also emphasized the importance of Christian male mentors who encouraged and taught him what it meant to be a disciple of Jesus, and how Nehemiah ministries is there to do the same for anyone who struggles with same gender attractions. He provided solid scientific research along with clear biblical evidence that negates culture's attempts to certify those attractions as "normal" and acceptable. Our church family needed to hear what he had to say!
- Dick Wamsley, Senior Minister, Taylorville (IL) Christian Church
“Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ: I would like to heartily recommend the ministry and counseling services of Kent Paris and Nehemiah Ministries. Kent was a guest speaker in several of my counseling classes at Ozark Christian College and spoke at an open forum meeting at lunch time. His personal testimony and insights concerning those who struggle with same-sex attraction was well received and very much appreciated by the students. Kent has a very gentle and caring demeanor that creates an atmosphere of trust and openness to what he has to share concerning those who have been sexually abused and who struggle with same-gender issues. Kent’s own background and personal experience in this area is heart-breaking and difficult to hear, but it gives a credibility to his presentation that none can argue against. The political activism and propaganda of the gay rights movement make it imperative that churches become informed on this issue. People need to know what is happening politically, socially and spiritually in this area. No one does a better job of presenting the facts and issues than Kent Paris. I would encourage every church to invest in Nehemiah Ministries and to invite Kent to speak to your congregation about this issue.”
- Dr. Gary B. Zustiak, Head of the Psychology and Counseling Department,
Ozark Christian College, Joplin, MO
“College Heights Christian Church had the privilege of hosting Kent Paris for a number of events. Kent's demeanor and words were extremely helpful to all who heard him, both in our main services as well as in the workshops that he conducted at our church. I work specifically with college students, both as shepherd and professor, and Kent spoke to several hundred of them on Sunday evening. The issues of same sex attraction, homosexuality and pornography are enormous challenges for our college age disciples of Jesus. Kent was very insightful and connected effectively with many hearts offering a powerful testimony as well as clear teaching from the Word of God. We were blessed to have him with us!”
- Chris DeWelt, Chairman of the elders, College Heights Christian Church, Joplin MO,
Professor of Missions, Ozark Christian College, Joplin MO
“It is critical to hit those controversial and even offensive tough topics in a time and culture where people preach tolerance over truth. Kent did just that. I had the privilege of listening to him at our Saturday night service.He showed our church that the Bible does say something about Homosexuality. People were able to let their guards down because Kent was brutally honest with his life story. When Kent spoke to our High School program we thought it would be great to do a question and answer laid back version of his presentation. Therefore, we passed out index cards with a list of suggested questions concerning homosexuality. Students were about to write down whatever questions they have and pass them in anonymously to Kent. Kent had their complete attention as he exampled what the Bible had to say on this confusing subject. I even offered to purchase one of Kent’s books for any student that would commit themselves to reading it!”
- Rusty Richards, Youth Minister, Chillicothe Christian Church, Chillicothe, IL
“Kent Paris' teaching and testimony are a source of both profound encouragement and challenge. The encouragement comes from the work that Jesus has accomplished in Kent's life, and is continuing to accomplish. The challenge comes from the work that still lies ahead for Jesus' Church. I attended a workshop that Kent led in October at the Illinois State Ministers' Retreat at Lincoln Christian University. It is clear that my time was well spent. Kent's presentation was biblically sound, engaging, compelling and gracious. As a preacher myself, Kent challenged me to address the issue of homosexuality and its ever-increasing influence in our culture more directly. After hearing him now on two different occasions, I recommend Kent Paris and Nehemiah Ministries without reservation to any congregation seeking to better understand homosexuality and to minister with grace and truth to the many souls who struggle with same gender attraction.”
- Josh Bennett, Preaching Minister, Southfork Church of Christ, Rochester, Illinois