A Texas pastor who called the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting “sodomites,” “perverts” and “pedophiles” has resigned from the church he founded after admitting he paid for sex.
Donnie Romero confessed to a multitude of “sins” as he explained in a YouTube video posted Wednesday why he stepped down from the controversial Stedfast Baptist Church in Fort Worth last week.
“I went to Jacksonville and I went to a casino and I was drinking,” Romero confessed in the video. “And there were girls there that were prostitutes and I committed adultery on my wife multiple times. I drank and gambled multiple times. … I even smoked weed.”
Romero, who is married with seven children, told his congregation earlier this month that he has not “been ruling my house well.”
“I have been a terrible husband and father,” Romero said. “This is the best decision, for my family and this church, to make.”
He apologizes often in the YouTube video, but emphasizes that “I haven’t changed anything I believe. I still believe exactly the same.”
The Stedfast Baptist Church, founded by Romero in 2014, is considered a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center for its anti-LGBT tendencies. The church has other branches around the country, including one in Jacksonville, Fla.
Romero used a sermon to praise the gunman who killed 49 people at the Pulse nightclub in Florida in 2016.