Orlando Pulse shooting survivor to joining Christian event celebrating freedom from homosexuality thanks to Jesus

An Orlando Pulse shooting survivor will be joining a group of ex-transgender and former LGBT individuals at the Freedom March in Washington D.C. this May.

REUTERS/Kham

The worship event will kick off at the National Sylvan Theater at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 5 with speakers sharing their testimonies as they celebrate their freedom from homosexuality thanks to Jesus Christ.

Among them will be Luis Javier Ruiz, who was at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando in 2016 when a mass shooter opened fired and killed 49.

"I should [have] been number 50," Ruiz shared on Facebook as he recalled that horrific night when many of his friends died. "But now I have the chance to live in relationship and not religion, not just loving Christ but being in love with Christ and sharing [H]is love."

Daren Mehl, the head of Voice of The Voiceless, confirmed to The Christian Post that he will be at the Freedom March on Saturday as well. A former gay man for at least 10 years, Mehl went on to marry a woman with whom he is raising two kids.

He said he chose to give up his gay lifestyle after realizing that it "didn't align to my desired identity as a Christian." He believes that the Freedom March is a great opportunity to show the world how Jesus has transformed former gays and lesbians.

"[It's] to testify publicly of the life-changing grace available to leave the LGBT identity for something greater," Mehl said.

Personalities featured in the documentary "Here's My Heart" are also expected to be in the Freedom March to share their testimonies. The movie, which was released in January, features 12 individuals who surrendered their life to Jesus and overcame their attraction to the same sex.

From the Sylvan Theater, participants will march to the White House gates at the back lawn. The Freedom March is open to anyone.

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