Thursday, March 6, 2008

Where Are the Nigerian Gays and Lesbians?

I asked myself this question today, after I just completed my 20th Expert letter for another Nigerian gay abroad seeking asylum in a foreign country. I found this very sad that many feel that they cannot live in Nigeria nor survive the hardship of trying to live their lives. For this 20 people, there are thousand more not seeking asylum but manage to relocate. If by statistic, there are over 15 million sexual minorities in Nigeria. So we cannot be wiped off the face of the country. Many gays and lesbians in Nigeria are simply in hiding.

After reading a wonderful book "Walking with Shadows" by Jude Dibia, sadly the story closed by sending the fascinating gay character packing his bags for a better life in the UK. I found this scenario depressing and I feel that many more gays and lesbians in Nigeria should be more organised and proactive for a better life at home. Get a life by joining a community of fgay friends and creating meaningful steps to the future and the liberation of many others.

I pray often to God to make my voice the voice of the voiceless and my face the face of the faceless and if that meant giving credence to homosexuality, then let it be so

Since being in Nigeria almost one and a half years, homophobia is duly present and I too have had a nasty taste of it.

Last year December 25, as I drove out of my estate to visit my folks. There was the traditional road blockage by the local gangs of men, well I consider them harmless to a degree. However, one shouted to the other in "yoruba" that dont block the way, we dont collect money from gays, unaware that i spoke the local language and understood well. I responded quite boldly; asking the person to repeat what he had just said, i noticed that fear must have gripped him and he began with an apology. Many other people around the popular bus terminal also joined in to apologise. I simply told these homophobes in my act of bravery that I am gay and proud to be gay, they have not lied about that, but i would not tolerate any abuse from them. I was shocked at my own reaction but i felt the need to celebrate the victory. So now they know I am gay and that I am not bothered about who knew or not.

February 2008, I was at the Africa Sexuality Conference in Abuja, with only two papers directly on the issues of LGBT. I made sure that with every opportunity after as many plenaries, I would raise questions on the lack of inclusion or the lack of information that included LGBT people, I had my hair in braid and I introduced myself as Rev Jide Macaulay, the Pastor of House Of Rainbow in Lagos, you should have seen the shocking expressions on their faces. I also took with me unfortunately 200 copies of my devotional for LGBT Christians this ran out on the first day of the conference, it was soon popular amongst the youth and a few adult, well since it was free. Questions were raised and on the third day of the conference, I was ambushed by four journalists, when one of the organisers would introduce me as an amazing person with a congregation of gay and lesbian christians. the question is who can be a Christian? I believe all of God's Children have the right to worship God without fear of discrimination. Since returning to Lagos i have received a number of email, text and calls from people who were not able to identify openly as gay or lesbian from the conference, i believe we are doing something good, acceptable and mature.

Just a few days ago (4th March 08) I sat enjoying myself at the Christening ceremony of my cousin's baby boy, when i was approached by a guy. He wanted to join our table, so we made room for him, I told him about my work as a Pastor and also that I am gay with a ministry welcoming to gays and lesbians, he appeared shocked and instantly asked for my contact details. Talking about Hijra community after an experience of meeting activists in Mumbai India early this year, he was fascinated and wanted to know more. Well, we kept the dialogue going until it was time for me to leave.

I am excited about the work we are doing in House Of Rainbow MCC Lagos Nigeria and hope we can extend the privilege of our services across Nigeria. We started a series of bible study on what the bible says about homosexuality, this has been a great source of knowledge for many of our congregation. The mission continues. More grace more power Rev Jide.

5 comments:

Nyssa said...

Sicko Pastor!!
If God really accepted Homosexualit, please tell me why a fine specimen like Donnie Mclurkin repented from it? It is of the devil and will neva be accepted by God!!! Stop ridiculing God, b4 he strikes u down! What is happening in the world today? it is really coming to an end..relax, lagos area boys will soon baptise u and ur sick followers with fire!!! Did God create Ada and Eve or Adam and Steve?
SICKO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Nyssa said...

SPURN OF THE DEVIL!
GOD THE END TIMES HAVE REALLY ARRIVED WHEN PEOPLE LIKE U HAVE THE GUTS TO CLL HIS NAME. WHO AM I TO JUDGE U...READ THE BIBLE, EVER WONDERED WHY GOD DESTROYED SODOM AND GOMORAH! READ ROMANS 1: 26 - 27, LEV 18: 22 AND GEN 19: 1- 29!!
YOU SICK PASTOR!!!
I PRAY U REPENT AND STOP READING THE BIBLE UPSIDE DOWN!!!
I HATE U GAYS BECAUSE U RIDICULE CHRISTIANITY AND U WILL GET JUDGEMENT ON EARTH IN NIGERIA, WAIT FOR THEM!!!!!!!NAIJA POLICE, AREA BOYS, SHARIA FANATICS!!! RELAX!

L-VII said...

I do not know if you stil use this blog but God bless you for what you do. May he continue to give you the strength to stand for the tens of thousands of Lagosians, Nigerians that have no one to support them. I pray for your safety. Keep well and brave, you have made me smile.

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