Friday, December 26, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Sunday, December 7, 2008
About Spirituality And Sexuality
Spirituality Spirituality is very much part of the human life. As a mission we help people on a journey to reconcile sexuality and spirituality. Spirituality in Africa and elsewhere is considered Spiritual food and the need to reconcile, worship, meditate and pray is very important, this also adds to the well being of the people. The spiritual life and existence of LGBTI people also negates guilt and lifelessness. The spiritual needs of sexual minorities is not different from that of sexual majority. Our ministry also look at helping people deal with the aftermath or discovering of being sexual minority, then we assist with reconciling their religious belief with understanding their sexual orientation and how that impact on their life and society. We use education and apply formal acknowledgement of the existence and validation of sexual orientation and identity to liberate and validate the individuals.
Sexuality This deals with the nature of human sexuality known; however in many parts of the world sexuality outside the “dictated norm” namely heterosexual is strongly denied, mystified and vilified. Religious leaders and mainstream organisations reject sexual minorities. Those with any form of sexuality, sexual expressions or identifies as a sexual minority faces gigantic oppressions by society, religion, the law and customs. In many countries there are no legislative processes or powers that addresses protection against discrimination or indeed existing societal phobias.
What we aim to do at Spirituality and Sexuality Forum Promote and assist LGBTI people on a journey to reconcile their faith with sexual orientation. Assist with process of Coming Out and understanding sexual orientation and identity. We work by exploring limitations that inhibits reconciliation of sexual orientation with culture, faith traditions and the Law. We found that many people struggled with reconciling sexuality with spirituality and have often associated either being lesbian, bisexual or gay as an abomination, this has had drastic effect on the rise of destructive behaviour and mental health. With this forum, we are confident that there will be changes in peoples' attitude towards self and moving from destructive behaviour to understanding themselves. Self hatred to self love and improvement on self esteem and assertiveness. Welcome to the forum and we pray that your journey to reconciling spirituality and sexuality will be fulfilled. Be Blessed, Be Good, Be Loved
Rev Rowland Jide Macaulay - LLB, MTh, FACTS. Founding Pastor, House Of Rainbow MCC, Lagos Nigeria;P.O.Box 1430 Isolo Lagos Nigeriahttp://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2008/07/17/purefoy.nigeria.gay.church.cnn+234 1 741 0978, +234 (0) 805 256 7170, +234 (0) 702 8161496 Nigeria;Yahoo ID; revjide;Alternative email; firstname.lastname@example.org;Blog; www.revrowlandjidemacaulay.blogspot.comBlog; www.houseofrainbowmcc.blogspot.com Web; www.mccchurch.org
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
ANNOUNCING FREEDOM2BE FOR LGBTI NIGERIANS AND HOUSE OF RAINBOW MCC
We now have a dedicated website, please show your support and visit as often.
1) Sign The Petitions
2) Send an email to the African Commissioner
3) Send a message of Support to House Of Rainbow MCC
4) Circulate this Campaign amongst your network/Mailing list/Groups etc
5) Donate to Support our work locally
Thank you so much
More love more power
Rev Rowland Jide Macaulay
Monday, August 4, 2008
By Reverend Rowland Jide Macaulay, 3rd Aug 2008
In the city we are accustomed to seeing many art works on display, some of us have artworks in our homes and we see them in the market places, in art galleries all over the world for some art lovers.
God is an artist, who built humankind to God’s pleasure and taste, God works ceaselessly and tirelessly and effortlessly to shape the work of art, that work of art is you, and me, we are molded and built according to God’s purpose.
An artist work with tools, different types of artists different types of tools, imagine the craft artist making a life like object, imagine the potter carefully molding from clays, and the ceramic artist putting the final touches on the paint work, imagine the portrait artist completing the replica of a family photo. We have seen artist at work trying to draw a portrait of a person and often we recognize the person through the work of the artist.
The bible tell us “All things came into being through him and without him not one thing came into being, what has come into being in him was life and the life was light of all the people” John 1:3-4
Similarly when an artist is working on a project, it never comes to life until the last paint is dotted or wood has been peeled. Often there is a ceremony to unveil the beauty of the artwork. And then people who see it will be amazed. And then they will come closer to view and make comments on the beauty, the dedication, and the hard work of the artist producing perfect results.
Lets us pray.
Loving God, Holy artist, we are your work of art created in Christ Jesus. Help us to live the good life you intended for each of us and for our community, we know that God sees through the heart of all matters and to the heart of our matters. Like an artist who believe in their work, God, please express your confidence in our creativity through this scripture, as I bring your word to your people, let us acknowledge that we are good and that we are capable of doing good, and all the Divas, (divinely inspired victoriously anointed) say amen.
“You were dead to trespasses and sins in which you once lived, following the course of this world…”
Following the course of this world, many of us who are not heterosexuals have been forced to conform to the world, we marry the wrong gender and make their lives miserable, we try to please our families, conform with culture and popular faith traditions, often like the wrong artist’s tool we don’t fit in, we try to blend in but often we fail awfully. We were dead through the trespasses and sins of trying to be who we are not, trying to be butch when we are effeminate, trying to be effeminate when we are butch, we come up with fancy walks by putting our hands in our pockets so we can conform to walking on a straight line, but often we fall, darling divas, we are divinely inspired and victoriously anointed, so we can walk with our heads high and relax, show the attitude and beauty of the holy artist, who made all the curves and the contours.
Our lives as heterosexuals or what society wanted us to be is over, tell someone “its over,” the bible says “once lived” but now that we are in Christ, now that we are on the way to reconcile sexuality with spirituality, we can understand 2 Corinthians 5:17 which says “so if anyone is on Christ there is a new creation, everything old has passed away; see everything has become new.” We are a new gay or lesbians Christians, we are able to tell people that God is the incredible artist that spent immeasurable time creating us.
We don’t have to pretend to be who we are not.
You can stand in front of the mirror butt naked and admire the beauty of God, you can feel your heart beat when you acknowledge the beauty of a man or woman that walks pass you, I don’t mean lust after them, you can say that you spent the weekend with Joseph who you are madly in love with and not Josephine the fictitious girlfriend who is often absent at the office Christmas party, “well oga she go village”.
Let me tell you when we work in disobedience we say to God I don’t like the way you created me, the bible tells us that this is a spirit that is at work among those who are disobedient.
We are by nature children of wrath because we live in the world, but we don’t have to be like the people of the world “if the world hates you, be aware that it hated me before it hated you, (Jesus declared to his disciples) if you belonged to the world the world would love you as its own, because you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world therefore the world hates you” John 15:18-19.
We don’t have to do the things the world want us to do, if we become strong and bold and say we are gays which means God Accepts You, then our family and cultural heritage will have to understand. Often we are afraid to tell people the truth, the bible says and you shall no the truth and the truth shall set you free.
I Peter 2:9-10 “you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of God who called you out of darkness into God’s marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people”
We belong to the holy artist, if we are rejected by the world we live in, then don’t be surprise because they don’t know us, but let me tell you, don’t expect the world to love you, until we proclaim the mighty acts of our holy artist, who called us out of the darkness of homophobia, the violence and victimization, the rejection and ostracism, the mental slavery and spiritual bondage into relationship and light of Jesus our redeemer, comforter.
Verse 4-5, Ephesians 2, “But God who is rich in mercy, out of great love with which he loved us even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ, by grace you have been saved”
The artist who owns the brushes, the paints, the colors, the tools, out of passion and love for us created us gays and lesbians, bisexuals and transgender, and some heterosexuals, if I told you that the real minorities are heterosexuals will you believe? This is a fact, there are many more same gender loving people, if they will acknowledge and admit, but how will they when they live in world that hates them. It is the love of God that enable us to reconcile sexuality with spirituality and not be judged or condemned, Romans said and “there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,” (8:1) also said “but God proves God’s love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us” I tell you, out of that great love we are called dearly beloved, out of that great love we can say we are divas.
Verse 8-10 “for by grace you have been saved through faith and this is not your own doing it is the gift of God, not the result of works, so that no one may boast, For we are what God has made us (LGBTI) created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared beforehand to be the way of life.”
Finally, We can run but we cannot hide, we are God’s treasure and the bible is clear, we are what God has made us, we are LGBTI people, prepared beforehand to be the way of life, we only need to come to the throne of grace and mercy, because we have been saved through faith in God, it is not by power nor is it by might but the gift of God, not the result of our hard work. God made us and we are wonderfully made, created in Christ Jesus for good works, that is why 1 Peter 3:8-9 tells us “Finally all of you have unity of spirit sympathy, love for one another, a tender heart and a humble mind, do not repay evil for evil or abuse for abuse, but on the contrary repay with a blessing. It is for this that you are called, that you might inherit a blessing”
Tell somebody you are blessed, if we go by the measure of hatred we experience from our families, neighbors, employers and general public, we will be subjected to everlasting pain. However, we are considered a blessing and we are Divas (divinely inspired victoriously anointed). Every negative headline and media campaign against our church we consider them a blessing, because I believe and I hope you will join me by faith that we would rather be a blessing to our community than gather evil or insult against their bigotry.
We are God’s work of art, regardless of how the world sees us, but we can display the beauty of God’s work by taking time to walk the walk and talk the talk of the beauty of the Holy artist in our lives. Tell somebody you are God’s work of art. Amen
Thursday, July 17, 2008
House Of Rainbow Metropolitan Community Church Lagos Nigeria, the first and currently the only Christian ministry open and welcoming to Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual and Transgender Christians was featured on CNN on Thursday the 17th July 2008, here is the link to view, http://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2008/07/17/purefoy.nigeria.gay.church.cnn
The CNN reporter for the series is Christian Purefoy.
Should you wish to contact House Of Rainbow MCC Lagos Nigeria or the Revd Rowland Jide Macaulay, please email email@example.com or
call +234 (0) 805 256 7170 or +234 1 741 0978
Monday, June 23, 2008
The brains of gay men and women look like those found in heterosexual people of the opposite sex, research suggests.
The Swedish study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal, compared the size of the brain's halves in 90 adults.
Gay men and heterosexual women had halves of a similar size, while the right side was bigger in lesbian women and heterosexual men.
A UK scientist said this was evidence sexual orientation was set in the womb.
As far as I'm concerned there is no argument any more - if you are gay, you are born gay Dr Qazi Rahman Queen Mary, University of London Scientists have noticed for some time that homosexual people of both sexes have differences in certain cognitive abilities, suggesting there may be subtle differences in their brain structure.
This is the first time, however, that scientists have used brain scanners to try to look for the source of those differences.
A group of 90 healthy gay and heterosexual adults, men and women, were scanned by the Karolinska Institute scientists to measure the volume of both sides, or hemispheres, of their brain.
When these results were collected, it was found that lesbians and heterosexual men shared a particular "asymmetry" in their hemisphere size, while heterosexual women and gay men had no difference between the size of the different halves of their brain.
In other words, structurally, at least, the brains of gay men were more like heterosexual women, and gay women more like heterosexual men.
A further experiment found that in one particular area of the brain, the amygdala, there were other significant differences.
In heterosexual men and gay women, there were more nerve "connections" in the right side of the amygdala, compared with the left.
The reverse, with more neural connections in the left amygdala, was the case in homosexual men and heterosexual women.
The Karolinska team said that these differences could not be mainly explained by "learned" effects, but needed another mechanism to set them, either before or after birth.
'Fight, flight or mate'
Dr Qazi Rahman, a lecturer in cognitive biology at Queen Mary, University of London, said that he believed that these brain differences were laid down early in foetal development.
"As far as I'm concerned there is no argument any more - if you are gay, you are born gay," he said.
The amygdala, he said, was important because of its role in "orientating", or directing, the rest of the brain in response to an emotional stimulus - be it during the "fight or flight" response, or the presence of a potential mate.
"In other words, the brain network which determines what sexual orientation actually 'orients' towards is similar between gay men and straight women, and between gay women and straight men.
"This makes sense given that gay men have a sexual preference which is like that of women in general, that is, preferring men, and vice versa for lesbian women."
Story from BBC NEWS:http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/health/7456588.stm
Published: 2008/06/16 23:28:31 GMT
Thursday, June 5, 2008
The decision to go to Bauchi was one of the craziest I have done thus far, but I know that Jesus was moved much more with compassion for people.
I love Jesus and I learnt that Jesus never discriminated, it was not necessary to determine whether you are Jewish, Gentile or Greek, a man or woman, old or young, gay or heterosexual, Jesus will talk and play with you. In Nigeria the segregation of religions, tribes and sexuality is more open than anything. If you are not a Muslim and a Northerner you are not welcomed in most part of the North, let alone if you are a homosexual. I learnt this was one of the problems during the sixties Biafra war against segregation, and the continued conflicts between Muslims and Christians.
In preparing for the trip sponsored by The Independent Project, I was careful. I carried my bible on my trip as far as the hotel in Jos, Plateau State, but did not take it with me to the Sharia court, I understand it is a criminal offence, it would have been the wrong place to present Jesus and come out alive. I have been advised by all my friends and well meaning people to keep safe. We love Jesus and I too really want to stay alive, to preach and further the inclusive gospel of Metropolitan Community Church.
Meeting the men was like walking into familiar territory, you know when you are there, gay and lesbian people are universally unique, there were smiles and tears. I think that the gaydar in Bauchi Nigeria is as strong at the gaydar in St Louis Missouri USA and we connected, emotionally and spiritually. It took a few moments to trust me as I looked either like a preacher (ofcourse which I am) or a reporter, I ensured they understood we are their friends and not the persecutors. I tell you a few eyes were coiled up and rolled over as many times and we tapped our feet and fingers in response, there were even cheeky but unique laughter.
I saw young men who by God’s love have made them the way they are and wondered why selfishly the system has decided cruelly to destroy them because of their uniqueness in God’s lovely creation.
It is obvious that these men are heroes for many other young gay men and women in Nigeria and all over the world, they just wanted to get on with life, they least understood the seriousness of the problems and why they are in court, they acted as normal and as natural as they could until their assailant arrested them and determined by the Sharia law that their behavior was not acceptable.
Because of this case their lives have been disrupted and I believe they need the help of the community as far as we can get, they need support to regain their positions in the society, they need to be able to trust us and help us in future. I also believe that they are not public about their sexuality as they appear coy. The Hausa language is rich and has a strong culture, Homosexuality is a difficult lifestyle generally in Nigeria, made worst in the Northern part of Nigeria by Sharia law, However we must remember that we are moving on in the world and ever ready for a revolution to reality, even a place as odd as Bauchi Nigeria.
The case was administratively adjourned to the 25th June 2008, 2pm. The defense team is asking for a complete dismissal of the case.
The prevailing problems for the accused men and their legal team include;
The length of the case and the apparent waste of time,
They informed us of the fact that their lives have been disrupted and are no longer receiving support from their immediate families, therefore life has been more difficult.
All the students informed us that their families have refused to support their education and they are struggling to keep up with expenses related to their studies.
Those that are students claimed that there is an increase in homophobic abuses and they are unable to defend themselves at their different institutions.
For those trading, they have lost clients and they have been dropped and not supported by the workers union.
They have lost earnings due to the numerous court adjournments.
Two who are in work, claimed discrimination from their clients and other market traders and they have not been able to earn adequate income to support themselves.
Legal team is being discriminated against and don’t feel safe
The case is costing the legal team new opportunities for other legal work, due to the time spent on this case.
We can help NOW, please let us ACT now by raising funds
Even when this case is over these men will need some support to get their lives in order, I strongly feel that we can help.
The lawyers are also on seemingly low pay for this case and are also losing other major clients due to discrimination and stigmatisation. There is an urgent need to support their efforts by subsidizing their legal fees and other expenses.
Thanks so much. Rev Rowland Jide Macaulay
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Monday, June 2, 2008
by John Dart
Little noted in the history behind the California Supreme Court decision that gives the "right to marry" to same-sex couples are the bold steps taken over four decades by onetime Pentecostal minister Troy Perry in trying to establish legal and religious rights for gays and lesbians.Perry, who founded a church 40 years ago that became an international denomination for Christian homosexuals, filed the initial lawsuit with his spouse and a lesbian couple in February 2004 that led to last month's ruling making California the second state, after Massachusetts, to legalize marriage for same-sex couples.The 4-3 decision by the high court—though endangered by an expected state initiative in November to amend the constitution to ban gay marriage—marked another milestone for the homosexual-oriented Metropolitan Community Churches, started by Perry in 1968 in Los Angeles County.
In 1969, Perry performed the first public same-sex "holy union" ceremony in the U.S., and in January 1970 he filed the first-ever lawsuit seeking legal recognition of same-sex marriage. It was dismissed before coming to trial.Perry tried unsuccessfully for years to gain membership in the National Council of Churches for MCC churches. But ministers in the denomination do serve on NCC committees and have been welcomed into many regional and local interfaith councils. Meanwhile, gay caucuses grew vocal within nearly all mainline denominations, and some clergy were conducting same-sex blessings.
The idea of legal marriage for gays was too politically volatile in the mid-1990s for the MCC to make it a priority issue. But by early 2001, Perry and his church were fully committed to the fight. Perry and his longtime partner, Phillip Ray De Blieck, were legally married July 16, 2003, at an MCC congregation in Toronto."Today the California Supreme Court legally recognized our marriage," Perry, 67 and now retired, exulted on May 15, saying that "our marriage is equal in the eyes of the law to all other marriages."
A sociologist of religion who has studied the MCC movement credited Perry's leadership for the changes. "He has had the audacity and the tenacity to claim for gay and lesbian people the religious and civil rights that most Americans have the privilege to take for granted," said Steven Warner, professor emeritus at the University of Illinois-Chicago and immediate past president of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion.
Warner said the movement led by Perry was "reformist" in seeking change and "conservative" in affirming the value of "two conservative institutions—the church and marriage." Many people in the gay community say "nuts to marriage" and reject all churches as homophobic, he said. But Perry and other plaintiffs "don't want to overthrow marriage; they want to be part of it."The majority opinion, written by Republican-appointed chief justice Ronald M. George, overthrew a law enacted in 1977 and a statewide ballot measure in 2000 that limited marriage to a man and a woman.
"An individual's sexual orientation—like a person's race or gender—does not constitute a legitimate basis upon which to deny or withhold legal rights," George wrote.The justices made it clear that the ruling applies only to civil marriages: "No religion will be required to change its religious policies or practices with regard to same-sex couples, and no religious officiant will be required to solemnize a marriage in contravention of his or her religious beliefs." The ruling cited its own 60-year-old precedent that made California the first state to strike down a ban on interracial marriage.
The U.S. Supreme Court did not follow suit until 1967 in a case filed by Mildred Loving, a black woman who died May 2 at age 68 in Virginia. In comments last month, Perry referred to her as one of his heroes—one who "paid a steep price, solely for marrying the only man she ever loved."The three dissenting justices worried about what effect this precedent might have in the future.California should allow gay and lesbian people "to call their unions marriage," Justice Carol Corrigan said somewhat surprisingly. But she joined two other dissenting justices in noting that so far a majority of Californians "hold a different view."
The two other justices asked whether a future "activist court might find laws prohibiting polygamous and incestuous marriages were no longer constitutionally justified."In 2000, 61 percent of California voters approved the ballot measure, saying the only valid marriage is one between a man and a woman. Only six of the state's 58 counties voted against the initiative, all of them in the San Francisco Bay area. Public opinion polls have shown increasing ratios favoring gay marriage. Still, a Field Poll in 2006 found that 51 percent opposed a change while 43 percent approved.Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, a moderate Republican who has twice vetoed bills passed by the California legislature to permit same-sex marriage, said he respected the high court ruling and would not back a constitutional amendment to overturn it.
Matthew D. Staver, representing Liberty Counsel, a firm that defends traditional marriage, and Glen Lavy, an attorney for the conservative Alliance Defense Fund, told newspapers in separate comments that they would seek a stay of the ruling until the November election.The California Catholic bishops immediately decried the ruling, and other conservative religious groups indicated that the issue may prod conservative voters around the country to action, perhaps to renew a drive for a U.S. constitutional amendment."
The California Supreme Court has taken a jackhammer to the democratic process," said the Family Research Council, based in Washington, D.C. "This decision put marriage at risk all across the nation."The decision was called "supremely arrogant" by the Institute on Religion and Democracy, a conservative group. "Churches should work to overturn it," said IRD president James Tonkowich, who noted that only two weeks earlier United Methodist delegates in their quadrennial conference maintained their longstanding policy that homosexual activity is "inconsistent with Christian teaching."By contrast, some mainline leaders who have welcomed homosexual clergy into their ranks praised the California high court.
The United Church of Christ, which joined a brief in the California case, approved overwhelmingly in its 2005 convention a resolution supporting legalization of same-sex marriages. Bill McKinney, president of the UCC-related Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, said the seminary "celebrates this historic decision."Episcopal priest Susan Russell, the national president of the gay-advocacy group Integrity, indicated that supporters for gay union rites should raise these issues at the 2009 triennial Episcopal General Convention in Anaheim, California. She told Episcopal News Service that it is time for the church to "be as prophetic as the state of California has been."
Bishop Jon Bruno, who heads the Los Angeles Episcopal Diocese, said the court decision resonates with the church's baptismal vows to strive for justice and respect for all. "To paraphrase St. Paul," Bruno said in a May 15 statement, "there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, gay nor straight in Jesus Christ our Lord."
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Both Bishop T.D. Jakes and Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr. are vibrant African American pastors with large multicultural congregations and enormous influence over portions of America's faith community. Yet their behavior toward the families of the American Family Outing has been very different.
Bishop Jakes and Bishop Jackson received similar letters from Soulforce and our partnering organizations in December, 2007, and March, 2008. Both letters asked the bishops to participate in a time of fellowship -- to break bread and have conversation with same-gender families. (Links to letters below.)
Bishop T.D. Jakes and his staff responded to our letters with honesty and integrity. During our visit, we felt true Christian hospitality and a willingness to engage those with whom they differ with respect and dignity. Bishop Jakes personally telephoned Jeff Lutes to thank him for the positive manner in which Soulforce had approached him for dialogue and he agreed that further conversation was important. The welcome offered to our visiting group was consistent with Bishop Jakes' CNN.com commentary (April 14, 2008) in which he wrote:
"It has always been my goal and purpose to be a bridge builder and to not build walls. It is in that spirit that I would plead with the church to seek common ground rather than to focus on irrelevant and often erroneous information that seeks to divide."
The experience with Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr. was markedly different. Bishop Jackson called Jeff Lutes on May 2, 2008, and agreed to our written request for dinner, conversation, and worship with members of his church. In a charming and friendly tone, he asked that we simply call his staff with the total number of people in our party so they could prepare the appropriate amount of food. Then, on May 21, 2008, three days before the meeting, Jackson's High Impact Leadership Coalition issued a press release falsely claiming that Soulforce was planning a protest and demonstration outside his church and that he had invited us to dinner and a "debate." On Friday night, May 23, twenty-four hours before the dinner, Soulforce received an email from Hope Christian outlining a specific debate-style format in which each group would ask eight questions to the other. Nonetheless, our courageous and beautiful LGBT families proceeded in the spirit of love and nonviolence.
Bishop Jackson concluded the meeting with the following remarks:
"I want to thank you tonight for coming. Again, if you had not invited us originally, if you had not insisted on the dialogue, it never would have happened. And I am thankful for the spirit in which you have said you were going to operate and in which you have operated thus far. Again, we did not know whether you were coming in peace or whether you were coming with a sword. We had no way of knowing that, we really didn't. And so we are very thankful for this opportunity to dialogue with you, and I believe that we have learned quite a bit from this time together."
In contrast to the conciliatory tone of these remarks, Bishop Jackson then granted a Tuesday, May 27 interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network, called our families "irrational," and falsely characterized the spirit of our meeting.
When we reach out to mega-church congregations in a spirit of nonviolence, we commit to interacting with authenticity and openness. At times, when our interlocutors are in the grip of misinformation so profound that they do not treat us with respect and integrity, it is tempting to close up, to withdraw, to become defensive -- and yet we persist. Why? Not because we are naïve, but because we believe that, ultimately, no misinformation or slander can obscure the goodness and authenticity of our families and our quest for justice.
Video of Bishop Harry Jackson with our Families and CBN Interview Afterwards
Letter to T.D. Jakes, Letter to Harry Jackson, Second Letter to Hope Christian
Thursday, May 29, 2008
By Lesego Masike on May 28, 2008
NIGERIA – May 28, 2008: Reverend Jide Macaulay of House of Rainbow, who is gay, fears for his life following death threats he received after Nigeria’s PM News published his picture alongside an article titled ‘Homosexual Act Not Against Bible’.
Written by Samuel Ateba, the story which appeared on PM News’s front page on 12 May followed an exclusive interview that Macaulay had with Mo Abudu’s on A Moment with Mo talk show discussing homosexuality.
The article states that Macaulay admitted to being gay since he was 14 and that he openly declared that he practices sodomy which the Bible is not against.
But Rev Macaulay denies speaking to Ateba, and declared the story incorrect.
“I did not give an interview to the journalist. Two people approached me asking for an interview and my picture [however] I declined”, said Macaulay.
However, editor of PM News, Lanr Babanona, is adamant that the article is true and that the reporter did speak to Macaulay.
“Of course my reporter did speak to him, and I believe that he was only expressing Macaulay’s views in the article.”
Asked if he is aware of homophobic attacks that could be sparked by this article, Babanona said; “Even though their behavior is considered abnormal, the Nigerian society is very accommodative.”
But it appears homophobic responses were echoed after a second article about the Reverend was published by the same publication. Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Anthony Cardinal Olubunmi Okogie described Reverend Macaulay as someone who does not know the Biblical principles.
He further emphasised that “when God created the world, he made them male and female, and asked them to increase and multiply.”
Okogie who expressed his shock to PM News said that he could not believe that “such a comment could be made by a man who claimed to be a man of God.”
The Archbishop advised all religious groups in Nigeria to be “quick in fishing out such fake pastors so that sanity can be guaranteed in Christendom.”
Meanwhile, two Nigerian gay men are presently in hiding after announcing at their engagement ceremony about their intention to wed in June this year.
Rev Macaulay inserts that the number of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people who want to get married is growing but there is no exact number as “many people have private unions.”
Now the couple, including Reverend Jide Macaulay whom they invited to officiate their wedding, are receiving anonymous threats warning them not to go on with the wedding.
The threats, coming from people claiming to be part of the Nigerian police, are now perceived by Macaulay as a threat of violence towards the Nigerian LGBTI community.
According to Macaulay many LGBTI couples in Nigeria “simply wish to exchange vows of commitment and love with their life partners.”
But since the Nigerian government has not authorised same-sex marriages, “many gay and lesbian people get married secretly”, added Macaulay.
He further added that, “same-sex unions won’t be against the government laws of Nigeria since there is no law that bars same-sex unions.”
Officially, there is no law that prevents same-sex unions in Nigeria, but currently there is the Same-sex Marriage Prohibition Bill which has been sitting with the Justice Committee for more than a year now for review.
The Bill, which was introduced by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, forbids LGBTI people from entering into same-sex marriages and also punishes those who aid, preside over or witness such an event.
Macaulay advised that even though a bill legalising homosexuality is not passed, there should be such a bill in place to curb homophobia.
On the other hand, 18 Nigerian men arrested on charges of indecent dressing and vagrancy in August last year are out on bail and due to appear in court on 4 June 2008.
The men aged between 18 and 21 were arrested in Bauchi at Denco Hotel during what seemed to be a same-sex wedding.
But they were since out on bail, and their latest appearance in court in April this year was adjourned.
If found guilty, these 18 gay men will have to face one year imprisonment or thirty lashes.
But the LGBTI activists who have been following on the case intend to seek dismissal of the case due to lack of evidence.
According to Rev Macaulay the LGBTI community of Nigeria is shocked by these incidents.
“The LGBTI community is haunted by these incidents and are afraid to gather but they still have to go on with life”, he concluded.
AIDS Implementers Must Address Human Rights
OSIEA and LAHI 28 May 2008****************
KAMPALA — The upcoming HIV/AIDS Implementers’ Meeting in Uganda mustaddress the widespread human rights abuses and lack of legal servicesfueling the country’s HIV epidemic, according to a new report releasedtoday by the Open Society Initiative for East Africa (OSIEA) and OSI’s Lawand Health Initiative (LAHI).“As a global leader in HIV prevention and treatment, Uganda must set abetter example on HIV and human rights,” said Binaifer Nowrojee, OSIEAdirector. “Uganda cannot effectively respond to the AIDS crisis withoutprotecting the rights of the most marginalized members of society.”The report, HIV/AIDS, Human Rights, and Legal Services in Uganda, documentscommon abuses faced by people living with AIDS or at high risk of HIV,including: barriers to employment or education; discrimination in gainingaccess to medical care; violations of the right to medical privacy; forcedHIV testing; and eviction from housing.
According to the report, while the government of Uganda has addressed themedical effects of the HIV epidemic, it has paid little attention to theepidemic’s legal and human rights implications. This is especially true formarginalized populations who are most vulnerable to HIV-related humanrights abuses: women (especially young women, widows, and women living infishing communities); sex workers; orphans and vulnerable children;lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals; and internallydisplaced persons.Uganda has a detailed legal and policy framework to address the humanrights aspects of its HIV epidemic, according to the report.
Yet most people who endure abuses or rights violations do not seek justice or legalredress. One main impediment is that legal services in Uganda are ofteninaccessible, ineffective, disproportionately accessible, or non-existent.In the absence of a national legal aid system in Uganda, the provision ofHIV-related legal services is dominated by non-governmental organizationsthat often lack sufficient funding to meet the need for services.“HIV may not discriminate, but society does,” said Anne Gathumbi, a programofficer for OSIEA and LAHI.
“Ending stigma is a long battle, but it is onethat Uganda needs to engage to protect the human rights and dignity of allof its citizens.”For people living with HIV in Uganda, stigmatization and discriminationrepresent a major obstacle to effective HIV prevention, treatment, care,and support. Fear of discrimination at work and school often prevent peoplefrom seeking treatment for AIDS or from acknowledging their HIV statuspublicly.Girls and women who have survived rape, sexual violence and abduction areexposed to HIV and face the added abuse of being stigmatized by theircommunities. Widows and orphans who have lost husbands or fathers to AIDSare also in greater need of legal aid services. Widows are often blamed forbringing HIV into the family and are cast out from their homes.
Orphaned children may be forced into child labor, which increases HIV vulnerabilityespecially among girls.The criminalization of sex work and LGBT relations in Uganda furtherthwarts HIV prevention and treatment efforts, according to the report.Women who are perceived to be lesbian are sometimes subjected to rape in aneffort to “make them straight.” Similarly sex workers report beingsubjected to violence at the hands of pimps, forced to participate inunsafe sex, robbed of their personal belongings, and coerced by police toperform sexual favors or pay bribes to avoid arrest.The report recommends stronger enforcement of policies and legislation thatoffer clear protection against HIV-related stigma and discrimination. Itcalls for greater support to community-based groups that have sought tointegrate legal support into HIV prevention and care programs. It alsorecommends strengthening legal mechanisms to help people living with HIVaccess justice. Local Council Courts appear to be the most utilized disputeresolution mechanism by communities, but these courts are not being used toaddress HIV-related infringement of rights.
“Addressing HIV solely with a medical response is not enough to combat thedevastating effects of the epidemic in Uganda,” said Jonathan Cohen,director of OSI’s Law and Health Initiative. “As communities in Uganda havelong known, legal support must be present in the AIDS response alongsideprevention and treatment efforts.”The report will be available online at:www.soros.org/initiatives/health/focus/lawTo interview one of the report’s co-authors, please contact: Anne Gathumbiat +254 (0)720 426815 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Late Oludare Oluwatosin Odumuye.
House Of Rainbow MCC Lagos Nigeria will hold a Special Service in honor, on Sunday 25th May 2008, 10.30am
Friends and Well wisher from within Nigeria and all around the world will gather at this unique service, the celebration and remembrance.
Dare who died on the 20th May 2007 will be remembered for his activism, love for humanity and gay rights campaign for the LGBT community in Nigeria.
House Of Rainbow Metropolitan Community Church,
Cordially, invite all friends and allies Of
Late Oludare Oluwatosin Odumuye aka Erelu
To The Special One Year Remembrance Service at
House Of Rainbow
Metropolitan Community Church,
Date; Sunday, 25th May 2008
Please Call/Text – +234 (0) 805 256 7170
for details of location
If you will like to send a message for inclusion in the service, please write to Houseofrainbow@hotmail.com
Thursday, May 15, 2008
ILGA publishes 2008 report on State-sponsored Homophobia
Being lesbian or gay is risking jail time in 86 countries and death penalty in 7.
May 17th is the International Day against Homophobia. ILGA, the International Lesbian and Gay Association, has chosen this date to launch a yearly report on State homophobia around the world, available at http://www.ilga.org/
The impressive collection of laws presented in this report is an attempt to show the extent of State-sponsored homophobia in the world.
In 2008, no less than 86 member states of the United Nations still criminalize consensual same sex acts among adults, thus institutionally promoting a culture of hatred. Among those, 7 have legal provisions with death penalty as punishment. To those 86 countries, one must add 6 provinces or territorial units which also punish homosexuality with imprisonment.
With this publication, the International Lesbian and Gay Association, a 30 year old world federation which gathers over 670 lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex groups from over 100 countries hopes to raise awareness about this reality which extent remains unknown to the vast majority of people.
The research, conducted by Daniel Ottosson, only deals with legislation criminalizing consensual sexual acts between persons of the same sex in private above the age of consent. Laws dealing with such acts in public, with under aged people, with force or by any other reason are not included. Nor does it include countries where such acts are legal. References to all legislation can be found in the foot notes, the foot note list and the source list in the end of the report.
This year, ILGA has also included a list of countries according to their legislations affecting LGBTI people. This will allow readers to get a quick and comprehensive overview on the legal situation in the world: from countries penalising homosexual activity with death penalty to the few ones allowing adoption for same sex couples.
“Although many of the countries listed in the report do not systematically implement those laws, their mere existence reinforces a culture where a significant portion of the citizens needs to hide from the rest of the population out of fear. A culture where hatred and violence are justified by the State and force people into invisibility or into denying who they truly are.
Whether exported by colonial empires or the result of legislations culturally shaped by religious beliefs, if not deriving directly from a conservative interpretation of religious texts, homophobic laws are the fruit of a certain time and context in history. Homophobia is cultural. Homophobia, lesbophobia and transphobia are not inborn. People learn them as they grow.”
Quotes from Philipp Braun (Germany), co-secretary general of ILGA:
“In many cases, "prejudice against homosexual people” is the result of ignorance and fear. This long catalogue of horrors is but a tale of the intolerance against what is foreign and different.
“Decriminalization of same sex activity is as urgent as ever. The fight for the respect of every minority has to be everyone’s fight. We believe that the recognition of sexual minorities as components of our civil societies and the acknowledgement of the equality of their human rights can contribute to learning how to live together, that is, the learning of democracy”
“ILGA is committed to have sexual orientation and gender identity come out and be discussed at the United Nations Human Rights Council. We believe the Yogyakarta Principles on the application of international human rights law in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity, recently developed by a group of international human rights experts are a useful tool to frame such a discussion among UN member States. It is important to set this debate where it belongs: on the human rights agenda. Altogether 60 countries have publicly supported sexual orientation as an issue at the United Nations Commission on Human Rights/Human Rights Council since 2003. Criminalization of consensual same sex activity is being challenged by NGOs and States in the current Universal Periodic Review.”
News in this report
As of February 1, 2008 sodomy is decriminalized in Nicaragua. The prohibition in former article 204 has been repealed as of the new Penal Code, law No. 641, published in the State Gazette No. 232 of December 3, 2007. In addition, the new code makes it an aggravating circumstance if any of the crimes prohibited under the code are based on sexual orientation. A prohibition of discrimination based on sexual orientation is also part of the new Penal Code.[i] Therefore the section on Nicaragua has been removed from this report.
New in the report are also sections on Comoros, Burkina Faso and Niger. It has been found out that Comoros indeed has a prohibition of same-sex acts, both male and female, and Burkina Faso and Niger are included as they have laws that can be used against sexual acts between persons of the same sex. The Gambian law has hereto been modified in the year 2005 to include sexual acts between women, and the modified law is now included in the report.
For more information on State Sponsored Homophobia and legislations affecting LGBTI people, ILGA’s activities around the world and at the United Nations, please contact:Stephen Barris / ILGA: 00 32 2 502 24 71
« H E » Religion :: Politics :: Commentary :: Nigeria :: Sexuality :: General :: News :: Akin Akintayo :: email
posted Wednesday, 14 February 2007
One might almost abandon hope that any reason, objectivity or compassion would come to play in the bill to ban homosexual activity in Nigeria, all is not lost, a public hearing has been held and there is a delay as reported by Black Looks.
This leaves out the animists who probably have no representative to lobby the National Assembly. However, I remember when I was in secondary school in Sagamu, Ogun State in Nigeria, the most feared medicine man in town was known as "Adodi", crudely meaning buggerer or sodomiser.
I can go on to say that these religions that are pervading our legislative spectrum are alien to our original culture of welcoming, tolerating and accepting differences whilst minding our own business.
Thankfully, there is voice of reason within the cacophony of the lynch mob set on homosexuals by the bishops and the imams; the deputy chairman of the house committee on human rights says - "We should not be hypocritical here. I think we should deal with this subject dispassionately. While we are trying to protect morals and values, we must also remember to protect people's rights even if they are a minority".
A doctor with UNAids goes on to say, "Failing to acknowledge that sex between men will only increase the vulnerability of men - and women - to HIV infection, since men who cannot talk about their sexual orientation are less likely to seek appropriate support services".
Now, that should get a few people thinking, however, that can get overruled by that perception that if homosexuals can go to jail for 5 years, that would take them off the streets.
After five years of punishment, would the homosexual now be cured and have become a fully fledged heterosexual or would the privation of the female sex in jail provide a ready and willing sexual object for the pent up sexual frustrations of the male prison population?
I never got to place a comment in an article posted by Black Looks about Reverend Jide Macaulay whom as a minister and founder of the House of Rainbow - a church that caters for those the church should be ministering to but have rejected, spitting hail and brimstone upon them with vehemence so un-Christianly - who was disowned and disavow with homophobic wrath by his father almost to damnation.
That is a truth that sits well with the hypocrisy that allows for religious protagonists to persecute and prosecute those of a different persuasion and that in the 21st Century; the Nigerian National Assembly is about to usher in the age of the Nigerian Inquisition, other problems are too insignificant to be accorded any valuable time.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
First it was a struggle to get on the Moment with Mo show, after many attempts and few phone calls from their offices, meeting with the producers of the Show, even after many discussions with our church leaders, I attended. I knew another show in Nigeria on homosexuality will either make or break. I feel in all understanding, it is good credence to begin a dialogue rather than a war of words
I had the opportunity to meet other gay and lesbian people, and the rare opportunity to include them in my prayers as together we stand to change time and history. In fact I can safely conclude that History was made by our actions.
Many chose to hide their identity, however, my boldness and courage that God loves me just the way I am, I decided that I need not cover my face, allow the people of Africa and the rest to see me and tell me what is wrong with and honestly being a homosexual.
I want to call on reasonable thinking people, including staff and colleagues at my college where I am currently studying for my PhD in theology to rethink, what are the accuracies of the report or the real issues faced by people that are homosexuals in Nigeria? Many of you are currently clergies and church goers, what are your views and conclusions?.
Let me say a few things, Jesus came to the world to die for my sins and NOT my sexuality, if you fail to love me, then God who made you and love you will love me always.
I have responded honestly with all my heart to the call of God to be the face and voice of our community in Nigeria, I am sure many people will agree with me, but yet the fear of speaking or standing for the truth, will hold many people back. I can understand.
Before we rush in to the condemnation mode or gather the 15 million sexual minorities in Nigeria, we need to think of the peoples’ right to be part of the household of God and also how they are to be included as rightful citizens of Nigeria. With laws that will continue to protect LGBT from violent attacks, malicious abuses, and inaccurate conclusion. Who is to judge?
My experience and struggle in just less than two years of moving back to Nigeria from the United Kingdom, as an optimistic gay rights activist and a gay pastor are overwhelming, I have seen and heard many depleting and inhumane stories of victimization, discrimination, ostracisation, rejection and so on of people simply because they identify or merely suspected of being gay or lesbian.
You can never tell what will happen.
Business people and some local printers have refused to do our printing jobs, because of their positions with their religion once they knew we are a mission that is inclusive and welcoming to LGBT people.
I gave more people a ride in our church bus after my lecture on Tuesday, 13th May 2008, it was a raining day and more questions were asked about homosexuality and the bible. I refused to be the closeted religious leader, I claim that I will be the face for the faceless and voice for the voiceless, even if it meant ridiculous story lines and this has started happening. I believe our work is cut out for us in Nigeria alone, let alone in the rest of the world.
We get no where without a fight, but I believe that this fight is righteous for many people that are unable to neither speak out nor stand up for their rights.
Our mission at House Of Rainbow Metropolitan Community Church
· House Of Rainbow is committed to basic Christian Gospel, that the love of God is freely available to all people, through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
· House Of Rainbow recognises the oppression caused through racism, sexism, hatred and other forms of prejudice, both within and outside the Christian Church.
· House Of Rainbow seeks to share healing with all people so affected.
Statement of Vision
House Of Rainbow is on a bold mission to transform hearts, lives, and history. We are a movement that faithfully proclaims God’s inclusive love for all people and proudly bears witness to the holy integration of spirituality and sexuality.
House Of Rainbow MCC, seeks to promote an inclusive gospel ministry of Jesus Christ, for all children of God, regardless of age, gender, race, tribe, language, marital or employment status, ability, disability, health, sexual orientation, etc
And if we fail as activist or Christian mission we are not serving the very people that need our services.
We have to be radical against those who violently attack us, many Citizens of Nigeria including Conservative Christians have concluded that homosexuality is a sin, they need new information, education and for Christians anointing for wisdom in understanding the heart of God for all the people of God.
Homosexuality is included in the mysteries of God and in the dynamic creation of the human spectrum.
PM news printed a violent accounted which are incorrect, and Lagosians will believe anything they choose to. I am not sure if PM News is the right choice of paper for intelligent and reasonable thinking people.
Monday, April 14, 2008
By Rev Rowland Jide Macaulay, April 2008.
If homophobia is the unreasonable fear of homosexual people, which is not a problem for all free thinking people, and people who have no fear of their own sexuality around other people’s sexual orientation then it is safe to say that the fear is largely unnecessary.
I believe we can coin a new word, “heterophobia” which can be said to be the unreasonable fear of heterosexual people. If heterosexual people can be unreasonably afraid of homosexual people not based on any evidence except to say unnecessary fear, then homosexual people can become “heterophobic”, also exhibiting the unnecessary fear of heterosexual people. It all means that where people are unsure of the other person’s sexual orientation or come to knowledge of another persons’ sexual orientation and/or unable to fathom adequate understanding for whatever reasons then a phobia will occur.
I cannot imagine a group of homosexual men and women, including youth terrorizing heterosexual people in any community. This will be seen as absolutely absurd but then why do unreasonable thinking heterosexuals feel at liberty to terrorize homosexual people, why is it that the heterosexuals in government, society, religious institutions that are considered intelligent and free thinking people, which I believe are still in the minority, not defend and speak up against the foolishness of discrimination, homophobia, misogyny etc?
Many Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgender (LGBT) people co exist with heterosexual people in a Global Civil Society, it is not too much to ask heterosexual bigots to understand the safe boundaries required for co existence of all people, especially recognizing the diverse sexual orientations. I found the irony of this parity unsafe that LGBT can live safely with heterosexual people, but some heterosexual people claim to have a great deal of fear, and either refuse to understand nor willing to live openly with homosexual people in the same community.
Often people ask me, how are you able to justify your arguments on the issues of homosexuality and Christianity? I responded easy. I am the pastor of House Of Rainbow MCC, the first and currently the only Christian bible believing ministry in Nigeria that welcomes without prejudice ALL people regardless of their differences, after all we believe that our differences as diverse as they are a strength and not a weakness.
After House Of Rainbow, a few weeks ago, as we proudly baptized three new coverts to Christianity and also called into full membership of our ministry ten more people, it was a busy and long day. I thought the day was over when later in the evening a guy in my neighborhood came with six other hefty men to my door about 7pm, they came not to start a war but to enquire and ask questions on the matters of sexuality and Christianity, this has been a regular occurrence, not the best, but when people have discussions on sexuality and spirituality and becomes unsolved, they adjourn their meeting to my home for more inspired knowledge. When they arrived, we began with an interesting gap in their knowledge as I asked questions to fuel their understanding. The issues moved from homosexuality to transgender interlinked with Christian faith. I believe my response was credible and they were indeed very keen to learn and find out more. This experience left me seeking more of such audience of ordinary heterosexual or perhaps people questioning sexuality and spirituality, the sad news was that there was limited time and we adjourned to another time. (I will keep you posted)
I am studying for my PhD in Theology, at the United Bible University, I am very proud of this achievement, also in trying environment such as Nigeria. I was admitted not based on my sexual orientation but on my ability and quest to learn. On the 8th April 2008, in an open class during a taught lecture, it was obvious that my liberal views would soon be challenged. I was expecting this at some point. I am no longer coy, I take the view as gay person, that I have to be more prepared with credible and intelligent responses, not waiting to be caught off guard. I believe that I have become bold enough, with the help of the Holy Spirit to defend the inclusivity of the mission I represent, the inclusive gospel of Jesus Christ. I was called an apologist, that is safe, but the behavior of my fellow colleagues not only horrified me, it also created the parity in the knowledge and exposed a gap in our understanding of the issues of humanness.
Now at the end of the lecture, I gave lift to people in our vehicle which carried signs and inscription of our mission, the name of the church and the motto: which is “…no fear in love” according to 1 John 4:18. The motto is a constant reminder to be faithful to God and continue to walk with Jesus in love for all people and in all situations. If we fail to love our neighbor as ourselves, then we automatically hate or dislike them as ourselves.
Halfway through the journey one of my colleagues, who have manage to select a devotional I shared with LGBT Christians from inside the bus and have had little opportunity to scanned the booklet, of the contents and the author’s name, began with a deceptive mode of questioning; Are you married, why are you not married, it is not right for a man not to be married, certainly you are old enough to marry?, As I truthfully answered his questions, he got pretty aggressive and said that God made woman for man and he will find me a woman to marry me, I kindly declined his offer. I made it clear to him that I was made in God’s image and that I no longer struggle with my sexuality or the person I am. And I believe my relationship with God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit is very much okay. My friend from Theology School got off the bus and we agreed to continue the dialogue and his busybody on why I was not married, again I will keep you posted.
My point of writing these experiences which I am sure is not the end of this dialogue with my colleague, and the guys in my neighborhood is simply that we live in an environment that continues to fail to understand God and the supernatural abilities of God in the creation of humankind.
Many people share their stories with me in Nigeria; One of homophobic and the other a transphobic bashing; these stories tell of the unnecessary fear their assailants exhibited whilst bashing them.
If Transgender and gay people are not a threat to heterosexual people, why do they suffer so much violence with extreme hatred? These reports border on the verge of hatred, stigmatization, discrimination, homophobia and transphobia. I can safely add that the ignorance of the assailants is the real problem and the fear of their own sexuality no doubts comes into questioning.
With our church, we see many people that don’t come to our regular Sunday services, as we also run other programmes, especially counseling for LGBT Christians and these people take full advantage of this service and equally benefits from the mission of reconciliation of sexuality and spirituality.
My queerness also led me to begin to study the bible and share short or snippet devotional, many I believed have been blessed and it has created further challenges for others and for some they are embittered towards me for queering the scriptures. I remembered when I first came to Nigeria to start the church in August 2006. I was told by many gay men, that I was not welcomed in the country, to me they seem to either love the darkness of the closet and the hidden deception of the sexual powers or afraid to embrace the changes leading to freedom of minds, hearts, conscience and the inclusive mission we bring.
The scriptures stand as a moral guide and spiritual support for many people, what I am claiming back is the word of God as they speak to the people I serve, people like myself, Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transgender people, which is the reality and relevance of scriptures. Many LGBT people serve other churches with their gifts and talents but are stuck in churches or religious communities that frustrate their physical and spiritual relationship with God. We are stuck in families and cultures that least understood us and are extremely afraid to step out of line, so we are forced to do what we don’t what to do, and thereby lead a double life and live a lie. In other churches in Nigeria where we believe LGBT people are present, the moral code is “Don’t Ask, Don’t tell” there are no programmes that informs the sanctity and relevance for sexual minorities. Many LGBT will continue to suffer in silence or fall prey to many preachers’ ignorance.
The basic simple tragedy of such livelihood is deception, for those who persistently deny their sexual orientation in favor of the dictated norm, namely heterosexuality will continue to feel pain and anxiety.
Evidently, many people now favor bizarre arrangements in the name of keeping face with societal acceptance. Many gay and/or bisexual men now fashionably marry and too often their boyfriends or male sexual partners are their best men, some conveniently arrange surrogate parenting with a female and thus bring forth children, just for their families to back off. A gay man I knew in Nigeria finished his first degree aged 23 years old and enrolled for another first degree, I asked why not a masters degree, he said he needed more time to be a student to avoid the question of marriage in his family, how convenient but the reality is for how long will he run and hide?
I met a young Muslim man, I can safely say that we are family as his family and mine lived in the same neighborhood in Nigeria, he admitted that he loved me except that I was gay and that is the only thing he cannot deal with and this has become a personal wish on his path that I changed. I explained to my friend that even on the return of Jesus I can do nothing about what God had fixed for me, the only good, acceptable and mature thing I could do is to honor the “Will of God” that has made me gay. We spoke for hours, sharing my developed experiences and challenges. I am not sure if this man is won over to my understanding, one thing I know that is clear is that his views are informed from a heterosexual stand point and also the Nigerian societal expectations of what human sexuality should be. TO BE CONTINUED