Thinking Anglicans

Nigerian bishops write about same-sex unions

Updated again Tuesday 14 March

Updated Friday evening

The Church of Nigeria’s official website has published an article, titled The Absurdity Of Same Sex Union. The article is written by The Rt. Rev. David Onuoha, M.A. (Bishop of Okigwe South).

I think it is reasonable to assume that the views expressed in this article are shared by other Nigerian Anglican leaders.

A long article has appeared in the Vanguard, dated Saturday, which is titled WAR AGAINST GAYS, LESBIANS: We must use all we have to chase ‘em away, say clerics. This contains quotes from many religious leaders in Nigeria. Scroll down to the end for the comments by the Anglican Bishop of Lagos, Dr. Ephraim Adebola Ademowo under the heading Judiciary must ensure there’s no breach:

It is crazy, abnormal and is not promoted by any religion known to man. Islam condemns it, Christianity loathes it and there is no known religion that accommodates the practice. If you are asking the position of my church, I think it is very well known all over the world and we have not changed.

As a matter of fact, we commend the Federal Government for the bold step it has taken thus far on the issue and we hope it will go the whole hog to make the National Assembly complete the process by enacting it into law which will be completed to the letter.

It is an unhealthy practice and every normal human being will boldly tell you it is not part of the traditional African culture. But above all, the Bible is very clear on the issue. It described it as an abberation and should not be seen among men who are called of by the name of God.

So, we totally commend the Federal Government for its initiatives and we will continue to pray that the National Assembly will enact the law and the judiciary will follow suit to interprete the laws when the time comes in order to forestall any breach of the law.

Update 14 March
A response to the first item above has been published by Changing Attitude Nigeria and can be read at The Truth of same-sex unions in the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion).

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18 years ago

So, it goes wrong with the first subclause, the third paragraph, the illogical interpretation of this Article IV thing, …

In its favour, at least the document mentions the “truth” side of Romans 1:18 (I had previously thought that conservatives jumped straight in with vv26-27), but it gets the sense wrong (it’s not “inability to abide by the truth”, it’s “supresses the truth”!), and it doesn’t deal with the phrase “God gave them over”.

That’s some conclusion to leap to.

18 years ago

Hi, thanks for the recent post. I just linked to it from my rather unrelated blog. I have however been posting over the last two days on the link between recent Nigerian violence and the gay ban, via Akinola. It’s here:
All the best,

Marshall Scott
18 years ago

There is nothing new in this statement. I continue to wish to hear these voices describe their interpretation of Scripture on other issues, and specifically Genesis 1:1-2:4a or Deuteronomy 25:5-10. I grew up with folks who believed that Scripture was “literally true, verbally inspired, inerrant and infallible.” I know how to relate to them, what to expect of them. And, yes, I do “walk apart” from them. On the other hand, that is far beyond understanding Scripture as “containing all things necessary to salvation.” If this latter standard is “the faith as this [Episcopal or Anglican] Church has received it,”… Read more »

J. C. Fisher
18 years ago

The Vanguard article shows mounting evidence that the Powers That Be in Nigeria (especially those worldly powers cloaking their hatred under the guise of religion) are desperately in need of an *exorcism*. 🙁

Lord, defend your gay children, suffering from these principalities and powers!

18 years ago

What is dangerous in these statements by religious leaders, Anglican and others, is the way in which they call on the state to enforce what they believe to be the law of God.

That takes us back to the Inquisition, where heretics were burned, not by the church, but by the state at the insistence of the church.

It might just be possible to mix theology and politics if the theology is sound and the politics humane. But in Nigeria’s action against gays and lesbian, the theology is foolish and the politics are brutally cynical.

18 years ago

For what it’s worth, I’ve written an extensive analysis of Bishop Onuoha’s article. My post is here:

David Walker
David Walker
18 years ago

Without prejudice to the actual issue of sexuality, I do feel that the definition of what is “unAfrican” needs some challenging. The original Ugandan martyrs were young men killed because (following conversion to Christiantiy) they would no longer take part in homosexual acts with the local King. I have often heard their sacrifice cited as a reason why the church cannot today compromise on this issue. There is no suggestion that the sexual proclivities common in the Baganda court had somehow been imported from the colonial powers. Whatever was going on there was indigenously African. (Again this is said without… Read more »

Jim Pratt
Jim Pratt
18 years ago

“social deviants”, “reprobate minds” “unkind words”!!!

“The victimisation or diminishment of human beings whose affections happen to be ordered towards people of the same sex is ANATHEMA to us.”

Who is acting contrary to the Primates’ statements?

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