Pastor and author Roberts Liardon is stepping down from ministry after admitting to a moral failure. He is taking a three-month leave of absence to seek "professional and church counseling related to a recent short-term homosexual relationship," according to a statement issued Dec. 20 on behalf of his Embassy Christian Center in Irvine, Calif.
Liardon, 34, announced his decision this week citing "several situations, both personal and health-related," the statement said. He had been advised by doctors to take time off to deal with an ongoing heart condition and further recuperate from recent surgery, it added.
"As a minister of the gospel, I realize my moral failure has been inappropriate and wrong," Liardon said. "I have asked God's forgiveness and for the past month have sought professional counseling and other help. I ask anyone affected by my actions to forgive me and to pray for both my spiritual and physical recovery."
The statement said that Liardon, along with those who are offering him "accountability, counseling and authority," will re-evaluate his situation after three months and "determine the appropriate time for his return."
Liardon is the author of God's Generals, a history of Pentecostal pioneers. He founded Spirit Life Bible College, and his Roberts Liardon Ministries has offices in England, South Africa and the Philippines.