Televangelist Pat Robertson has offered a detailed explanation of his comments about adoption made on last Thursday's edition of The 700 Club, reminding that he has dedicated a lot of his work in life in helping orphans.
"Today, on live television, I misstated my heartfelt dedication and commitment to helping orphans. For decades, I have supported adoption, and have helped tens of thousands of children worldwide," Robertson said in a statement.
The remarks come in response to comments the televangelist made regarding a woman who revealed that men were reluctant to date her because of her three adopted daughters, who all came from different countries.
"A man doesn't want to take on the United Nations, and a woman has all these various children, blended family, what is it – you don't know what problems there are," Robertson had said. "And you just never know what's been done to a child before you get that child. What kind of sexual abuse has been, what kind of cruelty, what kind of food deprivation, etc. etc."
The comment stirred up a lot of debate and discussion, with Dr. Russell D. Moore, Dean of the School of Theology and Senior Vice-President for Academic Administration at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, writing in an opinion piece: "This is not just a statement we ought to disagree with. This is of the devil."
Robertson explains in his statement, however, that his words did not come out the way he intended, and that he meant to say that adoption is not for everyone.
"The mother of three adopted children, who wrote in about her boyfriend's issue with her children, did a wonderful, unselfish act to adopt and I respect her immensely," the televangelist says. "Yet, adoption might not be a fit for her boyfriend. If that is the case, she needs to find someone who better shares her passion for adoption. Adoptive parents are taking on enormous responsibility, both emotionally and financially. Quite frankly, they need as much disclosure as possible about the child's background and health to assure the best fit and be prepared."
He concluded his statement by urging anyone that doubts his intent to look into his work over the years to see how much he has done to help orphans.