Exclusive: Controversial pastor Ted Haggard lands TLC reality project

Ted Haggard is coming to TLC.

The controversial Christian evangelical is getting his own reality project on the cable network. Ted Haggard: Scandalous will air as a one-hour special on the network.

Haggard was the head of the National Association of Evangelicals, leading 30 million followers across 45,000 churches, when he was caught having an affair with a male prostitute. He also admitted he had been using crystal meth.

The revelations generated worldwide headlines and forced Haggard to to leave the NAE. Haggard, his wife, and five children have since been trying to rebuild their family. The pastor speaks out about the TLC special after the jump…

“My family and I endured the darkest hours imaginable in the public spotlight, and have spent the last four years fighting and struggling to rebuild our lives, our faith and our family,” says Haggard in a statement. “Showing the world the new chapter of our lives will hopefully inspire others to find their own path to overcome their struggles and embrace the power of acceptance. The church is open to all, even those who have committed the darkest sins.”

The special, produced by RelativityReal and debuting Jan. 16, follows Haggard as he announces his new ministry in Colorado Springs, Colo. — the same town he left after the scandal.

Naturally, if the special performs well, TLC might expand the concept into a full series (just like, and yet entirely unlike, Extreme Couponing).


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  • greg

    Boy, TLC is really going after the red-state crowd these days.

    Remember when it used to be The LEARNING Channel . . . .

    • You Said It

      Just what I was thinking. Between this show, Sarah Palin, Toddlers & Tiaras, etc., I feel like TLC has become the broadcast equivalent of Walmart.

      • charlotte

        Oh my God, that is a perfect analogy. I never refer to it as The Learning Channel anymore. It’s The Litter Channel.

      • Mel

        I could not agree more!

      • amie

        lol beautifully put.

      • Candacetx

        nail. on. the. head.

      • Alex

        Couldn’t have said it better myself. And don’t forget the classic gem Sister Wives.

      • JED

        Walmart. Crack me up. That was freakin good.

      • Sordid

        Retweeted with your analysis. It really does fit.

      • Boombats


    • dropper

      Sad but true.

      • Heidi

        Wonder how the hosts of What Not to Wear will feel about their network NOW! They were already very unhappy that Sarah Palin was on

  • Bobby’s Robot

    Another reason to avoid TLC like the plague.

  • Twit Dat I Is

    TLC now means The Losers Channel

    • B.A.

      LOL. Isn’t that the truth?

  • jenisedai

    Lovely, The Lameass Channel’s giving another hypocritical right-winger some press. yeah.

  • Kelly

    Please please stop equating Christians and Republicans. Enough already. And why has no one created a Reality TV channel? Nothing but reality tv all the time. Get back to some decent programming.

    • Jeni

      I totally agree.

    • Dash

      Agreed. I’m a republican but not a christian. Thanks! I’ll watch this because I find religious extremism fascinating.

      • SarahSmile

        Check Out the Documentary “Jesus Camp”. It’s fascinating.

    • reason

      this has always puzzled me as well, since I find the ways of Democrats much more Christian than those of Republicans.

      • Mel


      • Bobby’s Robot

        I’m guessing “reason” means that Democrats care about their fellow man, and Republicans care about taxes.

      • Runswithforks

        @ bobby, i thought you said that Republicans care about Texas. LOL

      • James

        Read the book “Who Really Cares.” The results are quite interesting.

    • Deluded Creodont

      @ Kelly: When the Moral Majority and the Christian Coalition disband, I’ll consider it.

      • John

        I know what you mean, but there are a lot of Christians who don’t think the Moral Majority et al are, well, Christian.

    • Dee

      There is a Reality TV channel – its called TRU TV.

    • K.

      They had a Reality TV channel (“FOX Reality”)…it got dropped. Kind of a pity as I liked their original series “Solitary”.

  • whatevs

    On that note, please stop equating lunatics who call themselves Christians with those who are real Christians.

    • Mel

      As a none Christian, thank you. Sad but true, it only take one bad apple.

      • Louise

        What John said. True Christians are more concerned with being Christ-like (i.e. a decent person) than condemning their fellow men. They can tell the difference between spreading the word and demanding conversion or else. They don’t rely on Old Testament (you know, before Jesus) Bible verses to support their prejudices. Just to start.

      • Therese

        You said it in a nut shell. True christians just have a relationship with God.

    • SarahSmile

      How does one tell the difference between “real” Christians, and lunatics who “call themselves” Christians? I’m asking this seriously, and with respect.

      • John

        Real Christians are known by their actions (helping their fellow man), not their words or whether they go to Church on Sunday.

      • Wottadoosh

        When Christianity is known for rampant homophobia, hypocrisy between words and deeds, and the belief that the earth is only 6000 years old. Seriously, I don’t know how to tell the real from the lunatics.

      • Sisterlisa

        Jesus said, “they will know you by how you love.” He did NOT say “they will know you by how you condemn them” Condemnation is not the Spirit of God. Jesus said, “I came not to condemn, but to save.”

      • stan

        Its the No-True-Scotsman Fallacy. The “real” Christian is the kind that agrees with the views of whoever is making the claim. Liberal Christians say that they are the real ones, fundamentalist Christians say that they are the real ones.

      • Barbara

        Jesus said, “I came not to condemn, but to save.”

        Because the world is already condemned.

        John 3:16 in context:

        16 “For God so loved the world, [9] that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19 And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. 20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. 21 But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.” (ESV)

      • Marconi

        So Barbara would be an example of a fake Christian

      • Marconi

        The best way, and by no means fool-proof is counting those who say they are Christian, as one.

        If not, ask the hypocrite how many Christians are there in the world today.

      • James

        Read the bible. Start with the New Testament. “By their fruits you will know them.”

      • Therese

        When I found God lets just say he found me. It wasn;t in a church. I EXPERIENCED him. I asked Him in my heart, and He became a part of my life I see Him changing me from the inside out. I have a relationship with Him. I would never trade my relationship for anything on this earth. I love Him very much. I am not perfect, and I make mistakes, but as I ask him to forgive me he does, and we move forward not feeling condemned but loved. honestly I do not feel like a lunatic. I feel loved and free. =} I hope this answers your question.

    • mushu

      i completely agree, and i think it should be said as well that that attitude should apply to all religions

      • Allison

        So true.

    • koyote_ken

      Don’t equate “lunatic Christians” with “real Christians”? Like there’s a difference?

      • Pete

        Amen Koyote! Christianity is nothing but a cult. All they do is hate, start wars and they try to claim they are all about loving all. YUCK

    • Elizabeth

      There’s a difference?

      • Therese

        You are confusing a Hypocrite with someone who just loves God and has a relationship with God. But that is why God gives freewill you do have a choice what you believe.

    • Louisa

      Sure…if everyone stops calling Islamic extremists Muslims.

  • Barack Palin

    What a waste. A far more entertaiing show would have been Ted Haggard moving to San Francisco and setting up house with Larry Craig, with RuPaul as their wacky next door neighbor.

    • Kylenkc

      A great show for Logo! I would watch it. Every week one of Larrys or Teds boys could drop by and share over coffee and prayer.

    • caljit

      Love it, BP!!

    • JT

      Wow, I hear comcast is hiring for NBC’s CEO position…

    • Alex

      Now THAT I would watch!

    • ThePuck

      George Rekers can help them move in…you know, “lift their luggage.”

  • NCDavid

    A show about a meth-using gay preacher! Sign me up! Sounds like great television. Kind of like “Breaking Bad” meets “Queer as Folk” meets the “700 Club.”

  • Annie

    NOOOO! Worst. Idea. Ever. He is obviously not recovered after the scandal and needs $$. TLC comes knocking at your door asking you to star in a show — be prepared to have your life unraveled.

  • JJ

    should I ask “Why?” or is that painfully obvious?

    For Haggard to claim that this alleged “church” has helped him on his “path to overcome my struggles and embrace the power of acceptance” then he must mean the Church of Closeted Denial.

    Ted…you’re a gay man. You’re married to a woman, true, but you’re a self-loathing gay man who turned to drugs and male prostitutes to dull the pain of your lies/denial. Just because you’re now using the “church” to do this doesn’t mean you’re on a path any place different.

    • now voyager

      He’s admitted that he’s still attracted to men. I think he stays with his wife because he’s grateful for her obvious love for him and her support. Also, he loves his kids and doesn’t want to hurt them anymore than he already has. You or I might not agree or understand, but he has a right to stay with the one person who has truly been loyal to him if he wants to.

      • now voyager

        I meant any more.

      • Marconi

        Of course he does! And I have the right to call him a hypocrite that he is.

      • Louisa

        He does NOT have to use his experience as some sort of pulpit to try to convince other conflicted gay men to do something extremely unhealthy. And he has no intrinsic right to a television show in which to do so.

  • Justin K



    • Sarah

      Awesome… super intelligent!

    • Therese

      And Apostle Paul was a hypocrite, and God got a hold of him, and changed his life 2/3 of new testament was Paul speaking, so careful you think you are perfect. I want friends around me that will allow me to fail, and be there to help me get back up grow ect. Not condemn me and crucify my name and me every chance they get. That is not someone I would want in my life.

  • Rack

    The only thing that Haggard can teach is that self-delusion is a very powerful thing.

  • K Green

    Yep–here is ANOTHER Christian who is neither crazy nor Republican!
    Also, this show just made me throw up a little in my mouth! A better approach toward restoration would be not turning yourself and your poor family into reality “celebrities”.

  • Gross

    That man makes me squirm – I can’t even watch a clip of him on Youtube, I have to shut it off. Nice of TLC to give him a free infomercial though, so he can get his cash cow church back off the ground.

  • John

    Next TLC will be running a Creationist Special, or maybe one on Intelligent Design…
    On the earlier comments on separating Republicans from Christians, I think they do that themselves quite effectively by their own actions…Democrats don’t cling to the Bible, but prove themselves to be more in line with the tenets of Christianity via their actions – healthcare, welfare, social security, generally taking care of people rather than corporations and banks.

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