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(RNS) Former Colorado megachurch pastor Ted Haggard, who resigned top evangelical posts after a sex-and-drug scandal, denied reports that he is starting a new church.
“A corporation does not a church make,” Haggard, the former president of the National Association of Evangelicals, said in a brief interview on Tuesday (May 18). He said the incorporation will support the speaking and traveling he and his wife do across the country.
According to a document filed with the business division of Colorado’s secretary of state, Haggard’s wife Gayle filed April 29 for a nonprofit corporation named “St. James Church” at the couple’s address.
Haggard resigned in 2006 as pastor of New Life Church in Colorado Springs — which he started in his home. He later admitted that he bought methamphetamine and paid a Denver male prostitute for massages.
He went through a “spiritual restoration” process, but ended it through a mutual agreement with advisers. Some of his counselors said that Haggard assured them he would not start a new church in Colorado Springs.
Although the couple held two prayer meetings in their home last year, Haggard denied that the incorporation means they’re secretly starting a church.
“There are tens of thousands, probably hundreds of thousands, of people that travel and incorporate in order to manage finances,” he said. “That’s what I’m doing.”
Asked if he thought “St. James Church” might one day become a congregation, he said, there was “no way to know the future.”
— Adelle M. Banks
Copyright 2010 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.

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