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Ugandan Religious Leaders “Thank God” for Anti-Homosexuality Bill in Christmas Messages

Jim Burroway

December 27th, 2013

Uganda’s Daily Monitor provides a round-up of religious leaders Christmas messages. The draconian Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which was hurriedly passed by Parliament last Friday, received special mention by these three Anglican bishops:

“In Uganda, there are so many injustices like child sacrifice, domestic violence, drug abuse which are now a big issue in our schools… I want to thank Parliament for passing the Anti-homosexuality Bill. I want the world to understand what we are saying,” the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, the Most Rev Stanley Ntagali, said.

…“Can you imagine your son brings another man at home for introduction?… The church preaches forgiveness, reconciliation and transformation. I do not want people to look at us and say the church is against the homosexuals. We love everybody. The homosexuals, and lesbians are all children of God but we want them to repent and have eternal life,” Archbishop Ntagali said.

At St Paul’s Cathedral Namirembe, Bishop Wilberforce Kityo Luwalira commended MPs for passing the anti-gays Bill but asked them to object the proposed law to legalise abortion describing it as murder.

The Bishop of Mbale, the Rt Rev Patrick Gidudu, asked Ugandans and political leaders who are against the Bill to seek God, repent and renew fellowship to save the country from God’s wrath.

The round-up also includes comments from a Pentecostal pastor in Mbale who praised House Speaker Rebecca Kadaga for calling for the snap vote on the Anti-Homosexuality Bill.

Comments

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Ben in Oakland
December 27th, 2013 | LINK

We love you so much we’ll be happy to put you in prison.

What we need is a good old fashioned schism.

Richard Rush
December 27th, 2013 | LINK

The more I become aware of the temperaments of God and Satan as depicted by multitudes of Christians, the more I become convinced that they were switched at birth.

Lord_Byron
December 27th, 2013 | LINK

They have issues like “child sacrifice, domestic violence, drug abuse” and they think it’s important to pass a draconian law that goes after gay people. They have people beating and abandoning kids because they claim they are witches and they go after this. I know it’s cruel, but I’d be happy if a drought or something were to hit Uganda. Of course they would just claim it’s god judgement for gays and it would make things worse.

Timothy Kincaid
December 27th, 2013 | LINK

Richard, you made me laugh. Best quote of the day.

Erik
December 27th, 2013 | LINK

Might we expect some comment by the Archbishop of York on these outrageous statements by Uganda’s Anglican bishops?

Neil
December 27th, 2013 | LINK

This is the problem with deriving morality from religious beliefs – especially the Abrahamic kind.

Far from yielding eternal and fixed principles, it produces wildly arbitrary outcomes. What makes Christianity and Islam so especially dangerous in this regard is how their sacred texts clearly encourage absolutist attitudes, perfect for demagoguery.

Christianity can offer some very good values, but that side of the religion tends to come to the fore only when it’s disconnected from the direct exercise of power and must appeal by persuasion. Even then, many Christian advocates still go for the cheap politics of scape-goating and persecution – because the Bible lends itself quite readily to that sort of exploitation.

In Uganda, Merry Christmas sounds like a heavily ironic greeting.

Rich
January 11th, 2014 | LINK

A FB friend of mine, name withheld for his own safety whether he wants it or not, runs an organization called Gender Equality and Health Organization (GEHO) in Jinga Uganda that assists Ugandan LGBT people locally known as kuchus. He was severely beaten and left for dead (spent nearly a month in hospital, still needs pain meds and a wheelchair) just after a well organized police crack down and the arrest of other such activists in Uganda and just before this bill passed. It seems likely that the police crackdown was designed to raise a false image of sexually violent, child abusing homosexuals just in time for this bill to be passed. Thanks to his and other activists efforts many LGBT Ugandans have been kept safe from harm from mob attacks and the police.

He didn’t have to nearly die or to continue to risk his life by staying in Uganda as he has protected person (refugee) status in Canada where he lived after he fled Uganda to save his life many years ago. After he got established here and saw how things could be different he decided he couldn’t leave his fellow kuchus to suffer back in Uganda when the “kill the gays” bill first reared its ugly head. He returned to Jinga and became the public face of GEHO. Things were looking okay with the bill regularly delayed and international networks made to help keep as many kuchus safe as possible. They even held Pride celebrations! Imagine the bravery involved in holding a Pride celebration in a place like Uganda.

I think after he was nearly beaten to death he was seriously considering returning to Canada but at this time it doesn’t look like he’s leaving, though a new board of directors is in place if anything should happen to members of the current one. I’m of the opinion that every publicly known organizer at GEHO should flee the country before this becomes law in less than 24 hours from now. They very well could land in jail for the rest of their lives though they could do more work for justice in Uganda from the safety of another country. I’m sure there must be some competent unknown people who could keep GEHO running in their absence. They are the bravest people I’ve ever known.

GEHO needs as much international support as possible, especially money to help keep those in hiding safe and the organization running. Its been difficult as gofundme.com has taken down their fundraising page due to complaints from some Ugandans (I just checked their page for their web address and saw they now have a new gofundme.com page!). However they can still receive paypal donations through a third person who is safely in Europe.

Please consider “liking” the GEHO FB page to stay in touch with what is happening on the ground in Jinga Uganda (though they often can’t say too much due to security concerns and personal safety) and do whatever you can to help, those in hiding have nothing, so many unable to work but the rent still needs to be paid and food provided as well as medical assistance in some cases. Any amount at all will make a difference, if many people contributed even just a bit it would be enough, of course large donations are always welcomed too.

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