Huffpost Religion

Jim Swilley, Georgia Megachurch Pastor, Comes Out To Congregation After Gay Teen Suicides

Posted: Updated:

Jim Swilley, the pastor of a Georgia megachurch, recently revealed to his congregation that he is gay. The 52-year-old father of four said that his wife, to whom he was married for more than 20 years, encouraged him to come out years ago, but at the time, he told her: "These words will never come out of my mouth."

However, the recent spate of teen suicides, particularly that of Rutgers student Tyler Clementi, prompted him to change his mind. "For some reason his situation was kind of the tipping point with me," Swilley told CNN's Don Lemon this weekend.

"There comes a point in your life where you say 'How much time do we have left in our lives? Are we going to be authentic or not?'"

WATCH: