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A Recovering Evangelical, Out of the Closet

Today's Lean to the Left podcast guest is Jeff Batton, a recovering evangelical -- in fact, an ex-pastor -- who's now out of the closet and is counseling folks about life, religion, marriages, relationships -- you name it.

Batton has lived all around the world…Hong Kong, London, New York City…now Detroit…but grew up on a big farm in South Georgia and claims to be the ambassador of the South.

He’s started his own business, tried to save the world’s poor, and says he now coaches people on "what not to do." He’s worked on the streets where he got shot by a mugger, lived in the projects, became a minister, and then quit organized religion. In fact, he says he "had to quit Christianity to find Jesus."

Batton wanted it all -- marriage, kids, a happy life. But he struggled, trying to deny his homosexuality, trying to "fix" it by helping those in need. But it didn't work. So, he went through a divorce…a big no-no for ministers…and now says he’s a ‘recovering evangelical’. On the show, he says “religion is politics in drag.”

Batton also has written a book, “Grinnin’ Like a Jackass Eatin’ Briars,” and, of course, we talk about that.

It's an interesting conversation, to say the least. Here are some questions Batton answers on the show:

  • Why did you leave Christianity? Did you leave religion all together?

  • Do you see hypocrisy in organized religion?

  • Did you ever “fix” your homosexuality?

  • Why the poor?

  • What was it like growing up in the segregated South?

  • What do you think about today’s politics after your work trying to help the poor?

  • Who are your clients now?

  • Tell us about your book.

Take a listen:

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