Best-Selling Christian Author Comes Out as Gay, Announces Split from Wife

Thursday July 23, 2020

A best-selling Christian author took to social media this week to come out as gay and that he will be divorcing his wife after 16 years of marriage.

Matthew Paul Turner told his fans and followers that he will be splitting from his wife Jessica Turner on July 17 in a lengthy post shared to Facebook and Instagram. The Daily Mail notes k that the couple, who live in Nashville, Tenn., have three children together.

"Dear friends, I have difficult news to share. After much thought, prayer, and counseling, Jessica and I have made the decision to end our marriage," he wrote. "While we're best friends and thoroughly love doing life, parenting, and pursuing our dreams together, ending our marriage is necessary because I am gay.

"Being gay isn't a new discovery for me. However, as someone who spent 30+ years in fundamentalist/evangelical churches, exploring God through conservative theologies, I've lived many days overwhelmed by fear, shame, and self-hatred," Matthew wrote. "Though my own faith evolved long ago to become LGBTQ+ affirming, my journey toward recognizing, accepting and embracing myself took much longer.

"But for the first time in my life, despite the sadness and grief I'm feeling right now, I can say with confidence that I'm ready to embrace freedom, hope, and God as a gay man," he added.

The children's author goes on to thank his wife, writing she "is and will always be my hero. She's brave, strong and showcases love like nobody I know." He also says that he will continue writing books and is "grateful for the support of my publisher Convergent Books."

"Writing books about wholeness, hope, and God's love for children is an honor and privilege I do not take for granted," Matthew writes. "That said, we ask that you be kind and respectful toward us. Anyone who posts comments laced in shame, criticism of our family, our theology, or our choices will be blocked."

He concludes his posts by asking fans to "keep us in your thoughts, prayers as we engage this new path."

The Daily Mail writes that Turner "is a former editor of CCM, a twice-monthly online magazine about contemporary Christian music, and is also known for penning a series of rhyming children's books some of which have sold more than 100,000 copies each."

Jessica, the founder of a popular blog called The Mom Creative, also took to Facebook to respond, writing, they "are moving forward with ending our marriage, while remaining deeply committed to our family and each other." She also said they worked on their relationship for a year, despite knowing Matthew is gay.

"Our three incredible children have taken the news remarkably well," she wrote. "We are all adjusting to a new normal, with our home now extended under two rooftops. I am so grateful for the way we love each other... We are both grieving the loss of what we had and taking hope in what is to come."

Read Matthew and Jessica's posts in full below.

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