Controversial pastor Hutcherson battling cancer

Controversial pastor Hutcherson battling cancer »Play Video
Pastor Ken Hutcherson is seen during an interview on Thursday, February 5, 2008.
REDMOND, Wash. -- For more than a decade, Pastor Ken Hutcherson has been at the center of the culture wars in Washington state. Now he's publicly sharing a very private battle, his own battle with cancer.

"I was diagnosed in 2002 with prostate cancer," Hutcherson, looking tired and a bit rundown, said Thursday while sitting in his new Redmond office.

The pastor of Antioch Bible Church in Kirkland leads a congregation of 3,000 members. But Hutcherson came to prominence for his vocal and public battle against gay rights and gay marriage.

"I haven't felt good for seven years, but I try not to let that effect how I treat others and how I live," Hutcherson said. "I think that's why most people didn't think there was anything wrong with me."

Many in Hutcherson's own church don't know he's living with cancer, and he doesn't talk about it much.

"I can either look at it as oh woes me, or I can say thank God that I am worthy to go through this to be molded to be more like Jesus Christ and to know that he's kept me here for a reason."

The reason, Hutcherson believes, is to continue preaching against gay marriage. I'ts a fight that has gained him many enemies.

"I think there's a lot of people hoping I die," he said. "That may be one of the reasons God's keeping me around."

Hutcherson said he's praying for God's guidance on how to fight a bill in Olympia that would expand the state's domestic partnership law.

After a serious fall on his ranch during the snowy holidays, Hutcherson's body reacted badly. His doctors have asked him to cut back at home and facing a new round of experimental drug treatment he knows cutting back at work may be necessary.

Still Hutcherson says, "I've enjoyed my cancer....because it's molding me. That's the thing God is using to keep my mind on him."

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Watch the complete interview with Pastor Ken Hutcherson