The Church of Ireland Archdiocese of Dublin and Glendalough has said that the rector of one of its churches in Co Wicklow has rescinded an invitation to a controversial guest speaker who has written of "rewiring" the psyche of a gay man correctly "to enable him to feel like a man again".

However, Dr Ed Silvoso has said this characterisation of him is "fallacious and misleading".

Confirming the decision to rescind the invitation, a diocesan spokesperson emphasised that Dr Silvoso is visiting the country to address a conference organised by a different church group.

Dr Silvoso was due to be the special speaker at Redcross Church of Ireland's Sunday Service this weekend, but that announced drew protests from a Cork-based activist, Fiona O'Leary, due to his attitude to LGBT people.

Rector Roland Heaney, who has ministered in Redcross for 26 years, is part of the Evangelical wing of the Church of Ireland.

As recently as last Monday afternoon his church was promoting Dr Silvoso as the special speaker at Sunday morning's service.

However, following the removal of the Facebook posting, the spokesperson for the Archbishop of Dublin and Glendalough, Dr Michael Jackson, told RTÉ News that Redcross's Rector had taken the decision.

Dr Silvoso is a leading member of the New Apostolic Reformation, which preaches dominion theology. 

In one of his books, he writes in an account of a baptism ceremony he witnessed: "As soon as the now ex-gay man came up from the waters [baptism], he was struck by the power of God, evicting the demonic forces that had controlled him for so long and rewiring his psyche correctly to enable him to feel like a man again." (- Transformation, page 167).

The Church of Ireland spokesperson said that the genesis of the invitation was that Rector Heaney had been alerted by a representative of Dr Silvoso's to his visit to Ireland this week and was informed he was available to speak to the Co Wicklow congregation next Sunday morning.

She said the rector had already attended a talk by the doctor who is a leading member of the international New Apostolic Reformation movement.

The spokesperson said that following Rector Heaney's invitation to Dr Silvoso to speak at his church in three days' time, concerns were expressed to the diocesan authorities by Ms O'Leary.

The spokesperson said the Church of Ireland authorities in Dublin and Glendalough called the Reverend Heaney to a meeting after which the controversial invitation was rescinded.

She could not say at this stage whether Archbishop  Jackson had attended the meeting.

The spokesperson added that RTÉ News did not know the context in which Dr Silvoso was to have spoken at Redcross and that she understood he was not going to address the topic of gays and lesbians.

She said she believed he was expected to speak about prayer and encouraging people to be the light and salt of their communities.

She said he would have focused on how to transform the world by being part of the community.

One of Dr Silvoso's promotional videos, "Transformation in Uganda", presents pastors allied to him in the East African country who are in the vanguard of the evangelical crusade against gay rights there.

One member of Dr Silvoso's Uganda "transformation" team is Julius Oyet, who claims to have helped conceive the 2009 bill that promoted the death penalty for Ugandans found guilty of homosexual acts. 

It has emerged that the nephew of the Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has been quoted as highlighting "a close intellectual and mentoring relationship between people like Dr Silvoso" and himself and different Christian leaders in Uganda. 

In the book "Colonizing African Values. How the US Christian Right is Transforming Sexual Politics in Africa",
Joseph Okia tells the author, Kapya John Kaoma: "Definitely there is a link between conservative Christians in America and conservative leaders in Uganda. And a lot of strategic geopolitical thinking that is pioneered by pioneered by people thinking of leading Christians in Uganda ... For sure there has been a close intellectual and mentoring relationship between people like Ed Silvoso and myself, and different Christian leaders in Uganda" 

For a number of years, the Church of Ireland has been publicly, deeply divided over attitudes of its clergy and other members to gays and lesbians.

An ongoing dialogue within the Church is designed to heighten each side's awareness of the other's sensitivities on the matter.

But the evangelical wing -  which includes a number of senior clergy - firmly supports the Church's definition of marriage as exclusively between a man and a woman.

This evening Scott Golden, Chairman of Changing Attitude Ireland, welcomed the withdrawal of the invitation to Dr Silvoso.

Mr Golden said that for such a divisive figure as Dr Silvoso to have received an invitation to speak in an Anglican Church in Ireland was regrettable, particularly in light of the developments within the Church of Ireland over the last number of months with the publication of the report from the Select Committee on Human Sexuality that has introduced the ongoing discussions at diocesan and parish levels, on the issue of LGBT involvement in Church life.

Dr Silvoso rejects 'misleading' characterisation

A spokesman for Dr Silvoso rejected as "fallacious and misleading" the characterisation of him in reports about the rescinded invitation to him from the Church of Ireland rector at Redcross Church in Co Wicklow.

In a statement, David Thompson, Senior Vice President of Harvest Evangelism, part of the Transform Our World Network, denies that Dr Silvoso is associated with the New Apostolic Reformation.

Mr Thompson adds that a Ugandan politician, Mr Oyet, is not and has never been a member of the organisation's Transformation Network and that Dr Silvoso has never been involved in shaping Uganda's LGBT laws.

He adds that the inference made by RTÉ News about Dr Silvoso's posture toward the LGBT community "is horribly misleading".