Fundamentalist Christian Survivor winner discusses her views on gays

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com May 24 2002 11:00 PM ET

TVGuide.com spoke with Vecepia "Vee" Towery, the winner of the recent Survivor: Marquesas, about how she balanced her fundamentalist Christian views with her relationship with fellow contestant John Carroll, who is openly gay. "John told me, 'You realize I'm openly gay,' " said Towery. "And I said, 'Yeah, I kind of figured that. But I have to be honest, based on my spiritual beliefs, I don't agree with the lifestyle. But you, as a person, I have nothing against.' " Towery admitted to having an out lesbian stepsister and said that Carroll was "initially hurt" by her comments but added that "he eventually came around because he proclaims to be a Christian also. He believes that God loves everybody, no matter who you are, and [he's] absolutely right. But then also, the scripture says this, this, this, and this. So we hashed it out, and once he saw my position and realized, 'God, Vee, you really do love me and it's really not an issue with you,' he was able to get past it."

And would Towery hope that Carroll "gets past" his sexual orientation? "My hope is that he remains happy, just like my sister," she said. "And if that meant that one day [they] decided to go straight, then I'd be even more happier. But it's not something I'm praying for."