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Focus on the Family President Working to Change Ministry's Image

Jim Daly says his rise to the president of the Colorado Springs-based Focus on the Family was unlikely. He didn't live the traditional family life like the one the worldwide ministry advocates.

"Growing up as an orphan, losing my mom at 9 my dad at 12 gave me a lot of heart for sorrow," Daly said, "And there's a lot of sorrow in this world."

And it's with that kind of compassion that Daly said Focus on the Family needs to reach out to the community. In his new book, "ReFocus: Living a Life that Reflects God's Heart," Daly says there's a right way and a wrong way to do that.

"The right way is to listen and to be sincere and have a heart for what other people think," Daly said. "It doesn't mean you have to agree with them."

There's no doubt there are many opposed to the ministry's message. Often seen as anti-gay and anti-abortion, Daly said it's unfortunate that many think of that first when they hear "Focus on the Family." Still, Daly stands by what he says is a biblical teaching that homosexuality is a sin. He cautions against labeling it a "super sin" though he calls it a form of self-centeredness.

Dianne Derby: "What do you say to people who are gay and say it's not a choice, it's not self-centered?"

Jim Daly: "I think that's one of the great difficult questions...it may not be chosen. We don't think it's genetic but there are compelling forces on a person that lean or direct a person in a that way and with that we need to be compassionate."

When it comes to abortion, Daly said he will continue his work to make it illegal while working with those who support it to make it more rare.

"I think there are fair-minded people on the pro-abortion side who feel abortion, although is not the best solution, is a solution," Daly said. "I would rather create a culture of life where more and more women are choosing life."

They're choices Daly said can be achieved with a focus on engaging people in a positive way.

Focus on the Family was founded by Dr. James Dobson. Jim Daly became the president in 2005.


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