Thinking Anglicans

more Ugandan developments

Updated Saturday evening

I linked earlier to the statement by the US Presiding Bishop. ENS now has a news report on this, see Presiding Bishop says church opposes proposed Ugandan legislation.

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said Dec. 4 that the church believes “the public scapegoating of any category of persons, in any context, is anathema” and thus is “deeply concerned” about a proposed Ugandan law that would introduce the death penalty for people who violate that country’s anti-homosexuality laws.

Jefferts Schori also noted in her statement that “much of the current climate of fear, rejection, and antagonism toward gay and lesbian persons in African nations has been stirred by members and former members of our own church.”

“We note further that attempts to export the culture wars of North America to another context represent the very worst of colonial behavior,” she said. “We deeply lament this reality, and repent of any way in which we have participated in this sin.”

Yesterday, the Guardian reported that a Ugandan church leader brands anti-gay bill ‘genocide’.

If Uganda’s anti-homosexuality bill becomes law, it will be little short of state-sponsored “genocide” against the gay community, a prominent member of the Ugandan Anglican church said this week.

Canon Gideon Byamugisha said the bill, which recommends the death penalty for anyone repeatedly convicted of having gay sex and prison sentences for those who fail to report homosexual activity to the police, would breed violence and intolerance through all levels of society.

“I believe that this bill [if passed into law] will be state-legislated genocide against a specific community of Ugandans, however few they may be,” he said..

Today, the Guardian has this this editorial comment: Uganda: Unjust and infamous.

…Uganda’s anti-homosexuality bill 2009, which is now before parliament, is unpleasant even by the standards of anti-gay laws around the world. Its supporters will decry any criticism as neocolonial interference, but the reality is that Uganda is being misled, not least by evangelical churches, some of which have links with the American Christian right.

The proposed law is more a rant against homosexuality and the west than a workable piece of legislation intended for Uganda itself. Much of it consists of a list of unfounded claims, starting with the statement that “same sex attraction is not an innate and immutable characteristic”. Infamously, it calls for the execution of gay men found guilty of “aggravated homosexuality” – by which it means those who are HIV positive, or who have sex with someone who is under 18 or disabled. The bill may be amended during its passage through parliament to replace the death penalty with life imprisonment, but that change would be only a gesture to spare the blushes of Uganda’s aid donors. If passed – which looks likely, since its sponsor is a member of Uganda’s ruling party – the bill will continue to write hate into law…

Update

Episcopal Café unearthed this gem:

A senior member of the Anglican Church has thrown support behind the government move in a bid to phase homosexuality out of the country.

Rev. Michael Esakan Okwi said on Friday that not even “cockroaches” who are in the “lower animal kingdom” engaged in homosexual relations.

Read Anglican funeral occasion for comparing gays to roaches.

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Father Ron Smith
11 years ago

“AllAfrica.com has reported that the church’s provincial secretary told the Monitor newspaper in Kampala, Uganda, that jailing homosexuals was preferable to executing them. “If you kill the people, to whom will the message go. We need to have imprisonment for life if the person is still alive”, said the Rev. Canon Aaron Mwesigye, according to the website – Episcopal News Service So this is the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ? If this is ‘Gospel’ to the LGBT community in Uganda, then indeed they have no hope. Dead or alive, they have no mercy from the Church in Uganda. How… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
11 years ago

“According to the independent Ugandan newspaper, the Monitor, a member of the clergy of the Anglican Church of Uganda has compared homosexuals to cockroaches. The occasion was a funeral. According to the monitor, the clergyman is also on the faculty of the ‘Uganda Christian University’. The vice-chancellor of the university is Stephen Noll.

A very clear instance of the influence and teaching of this Western Evangelican Christian, Stephen Noll; and the sort of homophobic and distinctly UN-Christian ethos of this ‘Anglican’ University. I wonder where the money comes from to back up this sort of anti-Gospel drivel?

Hugh of Lincoln
Hugh of Lincoln
11 years ago

I’m very concerned Simon that this item has slipped down to SEVENTH place on the agenda. Surely this should be top priority at the moment. The HoB have it in their power to kill the thing off before the Bill is enacted and real lives are in peril.

Hugh of Lincoln
Hugh of Lincoln
11 years ago

I’ll take that back – didn’t spot the Chicago Consultation thread

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