A Gay Christian Athlete’s Letter To David Tyree

by Josh Sanders

This week, David Tyree, who has publicly opposed same-sex marriage and promoted conversion therapy, was hired by the New York Giants as the director of player development.

Dear Mr. Tyree,

I remember that defining moment in Super bowl XLII. Your helmet catch was one of the most incredible NFL plays I’ve experienced in my 31 years. It broke the collective heart of the Patriot nation!

But your statements in the past about the LGBT community and endorsement of the dangerous practice of conversion therapy break my heart as an openly gay Christian man.

You’ve talked about a personal transformation with Christ after being at the end of your strength.

You’ve talked about experiencing the love that changed your life forever. I too share your faith in Jesus as my lord and savior. I too value a religious and faith-driven perspective of loving the Lord my God with all of my heart, mind, and soul. I too strive to approach from an angle of prayer the daily challenges involved in the human experience. I too value the marriage relationship as a man or woman entering into a covenant with the person they’ve been created to love (I understand you disagree).

I’m a former athlete, coach and athletic director involved in sports ministry for six years. I have introduced to the person of Jesus the beginning of my junior year of high school. The first passage of scripture that meant more than just ink on paper was John 10:10. You probably know it. Jesus says, “The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy, but I (Jesus) come to give a full life.”

I knew I was gay early at a young age. I just didn’t know what that meant. I also knew as a member of a team and conservative community that acknowledging that part of me would be dangerous. I was told the stereotypical mantra that being “gay” was unnatural and an abomination before God.

So I did everything possible not to be “gay,” including “conversion therapy.”

For six months I participated in this dangerous form of oppressive therapy with the now disbanded Exodus International Ex-Gay Ministry. This therapy has no efficacy behind it, just fuzzy homophobic jargon. Every major professional medical association in America has denounced it as harmful to youth. LGBT youth are eight times as likely to attempt suicide, six times as likely to struggle with depression and three times as likely to use illegal drugs because of the dangers of conversion therapy.

I personally experienced group sessions where I was told I was gay because of an absent father or overbearing mother. I was promised I could change, that I could pray the gay away. The reality, however, is that my sexuality hasn’t changed. The only thing that conversion therapy did for me was promote resentment towards my parents and a growing despair that maybe my life wasn’t worth living.

Have you ever read Psalm 139? The psalm says that, “we are fearfully and wonderfully created,” and that God’s creation is “wonderful.” God knows us completely. This passage reconciled my faith.

If God’s works are wonderfully created, and he created me, then he created others and myself with the capacity to love another person.

Mr. Tyree, I write this to encourage you to open your mind and heart toward the LGBT community. You’ve been given an opportunity by the New York Giants as the director of player development. “The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy.” Don’t be the thief, Mr. Tyree. Show the love Jesus showed so many and continues to show us.

My hope Mr. Tyree is you’ll recognize that although Michael Sam may be the first openly gay player to be drafted into the NFL, he won’t be the last and isn’t the only gay man in the NFL.

Those who find themselves on the Giants will need your love.

In Him,
Josh Sanders

Originally published by Outsports; Photo via flickr user Matthew D. Britt

Comments (3)

michael demeule

Its important here to make
Its important here to make the distinction between celibacy therapy and conversion therapy. one is real the other is not. one can be celibate but one cannot change ones orientation (no one has ever proved that it can be done successfully). The difference is of course staggering because it is not really discussed as such even when dealing with children. If you wanted to push ex gay therapy to a young couple you would not tell them their child most likely would never experience loving intimacy in their life through your therapy but that at most they would have to embrace celibacy. Instead you would encourage them to believe in the “possbility” (at the absolute highest 1%) of conversion. The most terrible lie here is that they want you to believe some how that as being gay you were somehow chosen to suffer joyfully by a god who doesn’t value you enough as a human being to allow you to remain a whole person even though he created you that way.


Sorry to hear the biblical
Sorry to hear the biblical truth offense you dear . God is not mocked sin is sin and not your right to go against God design .Romans 1 plainly proclaims homosexually sin .Jesus says repent turn from sin and confess your sins .He then is just and faithful to forgive all sins . The Gay Blade …

Zak Zennii

“truthmatters” It saddens me
“truthmatters” It saddens me deeply that you so grievously ignore the totality of God’s creation. Observe Nature closely. You will find there are gay penguins, gay giraffes, gay dolphins, just to name a few.

The Truth is, God created all of them, gay and straight alike. And God created Mr Sanders, just the way he is.

And it is shameful to bear false witness to God’s creation and pretend, for the sake of your own prejudices, that being gay is “unnatural” when Nature itself abounds with gay creatures.

Comments are closed.