Donnie Romero — a pastor who gained national attention after his views on the Pulse nightclub shooting inspired a protest from LGBTQ advocates — has resigned. In a video posted to YouTube, Romero says that he had sinned by paying for sex, gambling and using drugs.
Romero — formerly the pastor of Stedfast Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas — publicly voiced support for the Pulse nightclub gunman, who opened fire inside the popular LGBTQ nightclub in Orlando and killed 49 people. A June 2016 Dallas Morning News report says Romero's words sparked a protest.
"These 50 sodomites are all perverts and pedophiles, they're the scum of the Earth and the Earth is a better place now and I'll take it a step further," Romero said in a sermon published online, the publication reports. "I'll pray to God like I did this morning, and I will again tonight, that God will finish the job that that man started," Romero said.
Citing videos of a church meeting and an affiliated pastor, the New York Times reports that Romero resigned his ministry last week amid allegations of adultery and drug use.
An apology video, purportedly of Romero, was posted to YouTube on Wednesday.
"I went to Jacksonville and I went to a casino and I was drinking. And there were girls there that were prostitutes and I committed adultery on my wife multiple times. I drank and gambled multiple times. ... I even smoked weed."
In the video, Romero repeatedly apologizes for his actions, while standing by his beliefs: "I haven't changed anything I believe. I still believe exactly the same."
Stedfast Baptist Church was classified by the Southern Poverty Law Center as an anti-LGBT hate group in 2017.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Anti-LGBTQ pastor who called Pulse nightclub victims 'scum' resigns, admits paying for sex