Dutch Sheets, Aaron Smith and Mike Thompson write…
“A message from the three spiritual fathers that Damon Thompson submits his life and ministry to…
He did not ask us to do this – we insisted – and asked him to post it on his website.
Dear friends of Damon Thompson Ministries,
As you have probably heard by now, after 10 faithful and wonderful years ministering at The Ramp, Damon is no longer involved there, though he still loves it very much. Due to the extraordinary number of inquiries, the tremendous amount of speculation and the inevitable circulation of rumors concerning this change, we feel it is necessary to offer a few explanations.
We do this, not to cause polarization or “side-choosing” – no one wants to see more of this foolishness in the Body of Christ – but simply to affirm the heart and character of Damon. He has chosen not to comment. For Damon to make a statement could necessitate him crossing ethical lines through innuendos or veiled statements. He has rightly chosen not to do this.
Multiplied thousands of you, however, have been positively impacted by Damon over the last 10 years and are now being left to wonder, speculate and imagine what has happened. This, of course, always leads to confusion, emotional pain, division and unfortunately, even disillusionment. We are already receiving several of the inevitable questions that arise when people are left simply to speculate: was there immorality involved? is Damon having marriage issues? was there financial impropriety? did he leave to take an offer somewhere else? You can imagine the questions being asked and the rumors that are circulating.
We can speak freely of several things to assure you of the character and heart of Damon. The simple answer to the questions above is that none of these things have occurred. Damon walks in purity and integrity – he lives what he so passionately preaches. His walk with the Lord is strong, his marriage is very healthy, his finances are in order, he did not leave the Ramp for other opportunities; and he did not simply “walk out” on the Ramp. Damon did not choose the manner or timing of his departure.
Finally, it is not our attempt to cast Karen Wheaton or the Ramp in a negative light. We are sure they feel that the decisions they made were appropriate, and that every effort was made to do so with integrity. They, too, love God, are morally pure and are trying to make a difference on the earth for Jesus. Over the years they have done this well and with great sacrifice. Our only purpose for this statement is to assure you that Damon remains pure, walks in integrity, and is the man you have believed him to be. He still burns with the fire of awakening and will continue to carry that mantle to this generation with an uncompromising commitment to the narrow road God has so graciously entrusted to him.
Please pray for Damon and his family as they transition, And pray for the Ramp, as well as they move into new activities and emphases.
LGBTQ Nation earlier reported…
“There was much weeping and gnashing of teeth among supporters of The Ramp ministry in Hamilton Sunday night as it became evident that ‘Prophet’ Damon Thompson had either left or been removed from the ministry.
Damon Thompson, you may recall, is the charismatic youth minister who drew national attention last summer when my article and videos of his gay reparative prayer service and a vitriolic rant against “queers” went viral.
In the rant, he claimed that the gay teen suicide epidemic isn’t caused by bullying, but by the “demonic force of homosexuality.”
Did the negative attention surrounding his views on gays contribute to Thompson’s departure? As of yet, there is no clear indication; there has been no official statement from The Ramp, its staff, or Thompson himself. But the signs don’t point to an amiable departure; it doesn’t appear Thompson even had the chance to offer a farewell.
Supporters first noticed something amiss when Thompson’s name and picture were quietly removed from the leadership page on The Ramp’s website, leaving only a picture of Ramp founder Karen Wheaton. His name also disappeared from upcoming events that he was scheduled to participate in.
A source did confirm that the ministry team was privately informed of Thompson’s departure last week.
The only clue from Thompson himself may have been cryptic hints in a sermon at a church in Panama City, Fla. Thursday night.
“The reason I’m fighting like I’m fighting now is because hell is sore afraid of where God’s about to take me in the
days to come,” he told the congregation at High Praise and Worship Center. “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet.”
Sunday night’s service at The Ramp seemed to confirm the worst fears [of] Thompson’s supporters as they watched the live stream on The Ramp’s website. The service, normally a high energy atmosphere with lots of jumping and the Christian equivalent of a mosh pit, was highly subdued. Audience members were audibly wailing and crying.
Lindell Cooley, who once led worship at the famed Brownsville Revival in Pensecola, Fla., spoke on the stage where Thompson preached just one week before. Without naming him, Cooley seemed to allude to his exit. “When people leave, you hurt,” Cooley told the crowd. “You’re not angry with them. You’re not frustrated. You don’t think they’re evil. You just hurt.”
Those words didn’t do much to soothe the faithful. “We need to pray. I am so grieved!” one supporter said. Another just wanted answers: “I wanna know what happened. It’s freakin’ Damon Thompson! He’s The Ramp. I love his spirit.”
Is it possible that Thompson’s ‘spirit’ could’ve led to his departure? Such resistance had built to his ministry that Thompson shut down his Facebook page after his page and The Ramp’s page were inundated with angry response’s to his anti-gay rhetoric.
In fact, he drew so much attention last summer that he was still wallowing in feigned martyrdom on New Year’s Eve. Pro-LGBT people had made 2011 the “greatest year” of harassment in his ministry’s history, he claimed. “Stupid stuff happened,” he said at the annual Winter Ramp. “I made a statement about homosexuals and got 250,000 emails in 24 hours. I’ve been preaching about Jesus for years and get 12 emails. I got 250,000. I said this is crazy stuff going on, so I just kept preaching.”
While the volume of email he received is likely grossly exaggerated, it is clear that the backlash had an effect on the ministry at The Ramp. Thompson continued to rant against LGBT people and AIDS victims, but he ceased using more inflammatory words like “queer.”
As recently as January, he made clear his intention to carry on a fight against a culture that accepts perceived social ills like gays and abortion.
In a sermon at The Ramp last month, he signaled a yearning
for the days when The Ramp associated closely with Lou Engle, an evangelical firebrand who exerts significant influence over sympathetic politicians like Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann.
Like Engle, Thompson
embraces Christian dominionist theology. Last year, Thompson ‘prophesied‘ that the Christian church would assume a “radical voice” that would allow it to
shape the outcome of the 2012 presidential election.
Yet if Sunday night’s guest speaker Lindell Cooley’s words are any indication, The Ramp may be seeking to move away from such overtly political dominionist Christianity. Cooley slammed the tendency of churches to embrace the political. “We decided to be political,” he said. “And in the middle of this, the dove of the Holy Spirit flew because he suddenly realized that, ‘I’m not the focus anymore.’”
In the midst of all this, Damon Thompson’s more prophetic statement yet may have come while he was preaching to the crowd in Pensacola last week:
“People operating under the wrong spirit are being forced into a quick repentance or quick exit,” he said.”