Sunday, 9 April 2006

Nigerian updates

Updated 13 April

First, on the Davis MacIyalla story.
Since the last report, the recent comments made on TA include several by the principals in the case. This week the Church Times carried another article, Nigerian attitude is unchanged by Pat Ashworth. And then Changing Attitude issued another statement on Thursday, Colin Coward addresses the new attack made against Davis MacIyalla, Director of Changing Attitude Nigeria.

Update A further press release from CA dated 13 April can be found at Open letter to Canon Akintunde Popoola, Director of Communications, Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion).

Second, on the matter of Muslim-Christian relations in Nigeria.
This letter to the editor appeared last week in the Church Times: Important cultural difference in Nigeria.

Third, the World Organisation Against Torture has issued a press release New Bill Puts Human Rights Defenders of Sexual Rights at Risk (link via allAfrica.com) which calls on the Nigerian government to withdraw the proposed legislation.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Sunday, 9 April 2006 at 1:05pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Anglican Communion
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From the Church Times' letter to the editor:

"So, when Archbishop Akinola says to the Muslims that, if they continue to attack Christians, then some young Christians may also get violent, he is not heard by many of his fellow Nigerians as giving a warning, but as making a prediction. If, as happened, Christians did retaliate, Archbishop Akinola would be seen not as foreseeing the event, but as influencing it.

This would be further proof to them that Peter Akinola was a powerful man: powerful enough not only to stand up to the Americans and the English, but also now to have the support of the Archbishop of Canterbury. "

Would such a cultural view of Akinola make him not only a powerful man, but a prophet?

Posted by: searching on Sunday, 9 April 2006 at 3:36pm BST

It is a truism that America & England are two nations separated by a common language (I suspect that Churchill was not the first to say it) -- if Fr Osborne's letter to The Church Times is correct (& I have no reason to doubt that it is), then the separation between the cousins is nothing compared to that between them & the Nigerians!

Posted by: Prior Aelred on Sunday, 9 April 2006 at 4:18pm BST

Almighty God, you proclaim your truth in every age by many voices;
direct those who speak where many listen,
those who write what many read
and those who influence what many see
that they may do their part
in making the heart of your people wise,
the mind sound, and the will righteous;
to the honour of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Someone should please tell CA and Pat that they are dwelling on 2003 activities of Davis while he virtually ran the diocese. The Disclaimer was specific about the period it was concerned about. - past 2 years - 2004, 2005

Posted by: Tunde on Monday, 10 April 2006 at 6:02pm BST

Dear Tunde,

I have just re-read your Disclaimers very carefully. You issued two Press Releases, both titled Disclaimers.

The first Press Release didn't mention Davis by name, but we deduce it is Davis that is the object of the release because the second release which directly follows does mention Davis.

The second release IS about 2003. The release specifically gives 2003 as the date.

The first of the two press releases lists a series of lies about Davis, or if you want me to put it another way, you published lies about Davis.

Davis is a knight of the Church.
He did organise a homosexual meeting.
He did not defraud unsuspecting foreigners of money.
He is a member of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion).
He did not send unsolicited emails.
He is not a fraudulent personality.
NOTHING that you wrote about Davis in the first Press Release is true.

The second press release publishes further lies about Davis. To correct them:
He is homosexual.
He is a member of the Church.
He is recognised by other priests and bishops in the Church.
He did not defraud the Bishop of Otukpo.
He did not fraudulently obtain documents.
He did not get engaged to the Bishop's daughter, let alone break off the engagament.
He did not steal large sums of money due to the staff.

On Thinking Anglicans, you repeatedly attack Davis and tell lies about him. You are not even able to tell the truth about your own Press Release. Those people around the world reading these posts will make up their own minds about who is the liar and fraudster and who is telling the truth.

In my posts I have tried to return to substantive issues every time - Lambeth 1.10, the Windsor Report and the Listening Process, to which policies Archbishop Akinola is a signatory.

Being gay is not universally belived to be a sin by the whole of the Christian Church. Would anyone like to challenge the statement that fraudulent activity and lying ARE sinful activities?

Davis is at present en-route back to West Africa showing that your attempt to smear him as an asylum seeker reveal more truth about you and not about Davis.

I take the exchanges we are having, including the posts by Davis, as revealing somthing of the dynamic of the Anglican Communion dealing with human sexuality.

What they have revealed to me are:
the integrity of a gay Nigerian who is withstanding the most wicked attacks from senior leaders of his own Church, simply because he is gay;
the refusal of Nigeria to respect decisons of the Church about engagement with lesbian and gay people;
gross violations of Christian truth and dignity.

Changing Attitude Nigeria and Changing Attitude England are Christian, Anglican organsiations, with supporters who are faithful, prayerful, committed members of the Church. In Nigeria, these lesbian and gay members remain wisely hidden. They are afraid of being subjected to foul intolerance and abuse if they reveal themselves.

It is against this background that we remain faithful to the Church of Jesus Christ our Lord and to the commitment of the Anglican Communion to respect, listen to and better understand the experience of lesbian and gay people.

I want to know how the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) is responding to every section of Lambeth 1.10 and the Windsor Report.

Posted by: Colin Coward on Tuesday, 11 April 2006 at 11:28am BST

Later today, Changing Attitude will be publishing a further statement on our web site in response to Tunde's final post on the previous thread and following an extended interview this morning with Davis MacIyalla.

One comment for now. Tunde wrote that "The disclaimer was careful enough to explain the reason behind his (bishop Ugede's) trust in you (Davis)". I have re-read both disclaimer again very, very carefully. I find nothing except criticisms of Davis, and absolutely nothing that explains Ugede's trust in Davis.

Am I going crazy? No - but reading Tunde's posts, I feel like it. His reality is utterly different from mine. What he says is to be found in his own disclaimer simply isn't there. This doesn't necessarily mean that nothing he says should be taken as true, but if he is totally mistaken about his own documents, this reinforces my belief that nothing Tunde has written about Davis can be accepted as true.

Posted by: Colin Coward on Wednesday, 12 April 2006 at 1:21pm BST

Dear Colin,

Peace!

I really should not be occupying myself with this during this busy Holy Week but I want to avoid being misrepresented again.

Your post refers to http://www.anglican-nig.org/fraudulent_persons.htm and alleged that it was targeted towards Davis. That is not entirely true. He was included but I still have dozens of mails from Europe and US to back up the attempts by fraudulent personalities to defraud using Church of Nigeria sentiments. Since the disclaimer, and with its link on our home page, my rate of receiving such mails have decreased from the monthly dozens to a trickle. (none so far in the past 42 days) .

I have repeatedly said you are free to heed or disregard the disclaimers. What baffles me is your persistence to read into them what is not stated in a bid to defend someone only because he identifies himself as homosexual. Was he straight, would you still see ‘past two years’ from December 28th 2005 as meaning 2003?

The only mention of 2003 in the second disclaimer - http://www.anglican-nig.org/disclaimer_iyalla.htm shows he was fraudulently very active in the church. You have helped to confirm his domineering influence over a bishop and his diocese during the period. Concerning your assertions, I maintain that with documents in my possession, I am sure that :

Davis is NOT a knight the diocese of Otukpo as claimed
He did not organise a homosexual meeting of Anglicans in 2005
In 2004 and 2005, while he was establishing contact with you, he was at large from the Church.
If you are not asking questions now, with passage of time you will be convinced about fraudulent activities.

I do not care about his sexuality, but he was not known to be homosexual in Otukpo.
Disclaimer said he was ‘traced to be the same person who.. ’ Do not understand how you made up your idea it reads he ‘is not recognised’.
Maybe he is only still retaining the Otukpo money with him for ‘Safe-keeping’

Dear Colin, Thanks for the name calling and sincere apologies for warning you. I believe and preach that liars are in danger of hellfire Rev. 21:8 and I have no intention of experiencing that. I have however begun to wonder about you. Davis in an April 7th post wrote:

“I have just came back from Geneva to host our leadership meeting which will be hosted by our convenor in Jos diocese. “

while you asserted four days later in your April 11th post that ;

“Davis is at present en-route back to West Africa”

You referenced his post in yours and one wonders at the contradiction or deliberate lie.

Back to your objectivity as you would call it. I do not have any press release now concerning your questions. The last two paragraphs of the disclaimer states the position of the church as at that time. Personally, I have only come in contact with two cases. (Now do not go to say what I did not say) One was a false allegation, the second a self- confessed gay. Both are still regularly worshiping in the Church and are not in any homosexual relationship.

Dear Colin, If you will let me be, do whatever you like with Davis. Take him into the ordained ministry if you want. Sponsor his ‘leadership meetings’ while he is still ‘en-route’ if you have the funds. I have made it sufficiently clear you are not dealing with the Church of Nigeria nor helping any ‘homosexual member of the church’ If your ‘support will get the non-Anglican leaders of Alliance Rights and SPIN to start attending our Churches, I would be delighted. Apart from that, the whole issue is a costly distraction for me now.

You have set your mission to establish homosexuality as the norm in the Anglican Church. Most of us in Nigeria have a different mission which is to win lost souls to Christ. They come as they are but are touched by God to forsake their sins and be transformed. We disturb no intending worshipper, turn away no one, persecute no one, and unashamedly maintain the sanctity of the Holy Scriptures.

Lord Of all life and power,
Who through the mighty resurrection of your Son
Overcame the old order of sin and death
to make all things new in him;
grant that we, being dead to sin and alive to you in Jesus Christ
may reign with him in glory;
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit be praise and honour,
glory and might, now and in all eternity. Amen.

Posted by: Tunde on Wednesday, 12 April 2006 at 1:48pm BST

tunde,

Let's bring your attention back to specific questions.

To quote Father Colin,

"I want to know how the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) is responding to every section of Lambeth 1.10 and the Windsor Report."

Posted by: RMF on Wednesday, 12 April 2006 at 5:37pm BST

I am wondering a little about the language question. There are languages full of what the French call "subjonctif", that is modes to express doubt, possibility, too much of a certainty, and so on - so conspicuously (for me, a Swede) absent from the Blair-Campbell report on the Iraqui WMD, the other year...

Swedish and some other languages have very little of this - perhaps only residues in half forgotten dialects.

Everything is in the Indicative.

Some, like Hebrew, lack this mode altogether, to the point of sounding rude and brutal to more sensitive spirits ;=)

I wonder if this can have something do do with the mis-coloured handles...

Posted by: Göran Koch-Swahne on Wednesday, 12 April 2006 at 7:46pm BST

Dear Tunde,

Perhaps it is appropriate that we are in Holy Week, the most important week of the Christian year when we remember the human frailty of a group of women and men who betrayed and deserted the Lord of Life. The story reminds me that it is not because I am gay that the Lord Jesus Christ was crucified. He was crucified because people ran away and did not stand by him or tell the truth about him. If they hadn’t run away and lied, we would not be Christians nor be remembering the crucifixion or celebrating the resurrection this week.

continued at...

http://www.changingattitude.org.uk/news/newsitem.asp?id=219

Posted by: Colin Coward on Thursday, 13 April 2006 at 11:22am BST

Dear Colin,

Thanks for forcing us to visit your organisation’s site and for confirming that Davis’ lie that he was back in Nigeria is permissible (because he is gay? )
Very busy now and will respond fully after Easter.

I am however confused about your confusion.
You initiated the reference to the two different disclaimers. Why are you now muddling things up? To show me as inconsistent? Sorry. Maybe I need to quote you for clarity.
You wrote;
“The first Press Release didn't mention Davis by name, but we deduce it is Davis that is the object of the release..”

I responded “Your post refers to http://www.anglican-nig.org/fraudulent_persons.htm and alleged that it was targeted towards Davis. That is not entirely true. He was included but I still have dozens of mails from Europe and US to back up the attempts by fraudulent personalities to defraud using Church of Nigeria sentiments…”
Somewhere from the blue you now got the idea that I am maintaining Davis name is not on the second disclaimer. Whoa!

The second http://www.anglican-nig.org/disclaimer_iyalla.htm had his name on the heading and I have nowhere said it was not targeted to him. It was all about him.

I wrote earlier “I have repeatedly said you are free to heed or disregard the disclaimers. What baffles me is your persistence to read into them what is not stated in a bid to defend someone only because he identifies himself as homosexual. Was he straight, would you still see ‘past two years’ from December 28th 2005 as meaning 2003?
The only mention of 2003 in the second disclaimer - http://www.anglican-nig.org/disclaimer_iyalla.htm shows he was fraudulently very active in the church. You have helped to confirm his domineering influence over a bishop and his diocese during the period.”

Almighty God, whose Son,
came to give light to all mankind,
open our eyes to behold your glorious light
and to so order our lives with it
that all works of darkness are discarded
and your name glorified.
in Jesus name we pray
Amen.

Have a wonderful Easter.

Posted by: Tunde on Thursday, 13 April 2006 at 5:30pm BST

I reiterate:
1. How is the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) responding to every section of Lambeth 1.10 and the Windsor Report?

2. How does the Church in Nigeria justify supporting a bill that will result in the opression of gay people?

I further reiterate, I do not object to your opposition to homosexuality nor your sincere belief that gay people should change their sexuality and that they can change through Christ, though I must confess, after 10 years of praying not to be gay, I was led, I believe by God, to accept that I am as He made me, and not to any change of sexuality.

What bothers me is your willingness to support a law that will result in the oppression of and increase in the suffering of gay people in your country. We can argue about the Christianity of your desire to make people heterosexual, but there is no denying that oppression of anyone, regardless of how much of a sinner you believe them to be, is not Christian behaviour. How do you justify this? If I can be convinced that such behaviour is in accordance with the Gospel, then maybe I can accept what you say about Davis, but why should I believe the words of someone who is willing to countenance oppression?

Posted by: Ford Elms on Wednesday, 19 April 2006 at 4:30pm BST
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