Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


African traditionalists reject gay Anglicans

31 January 2014, 08:08

Paris - An African-led traditionalist group opposed to growing acceptance of homosexuality in the worldwide Anglican Communion has rejected a Church of England plea to review its Bible-based condemnation of gays.

Kenyan Archbishop Eliud Wabukala, chair of the group, said it was "deeply troubling" that Anglicanism's mother church was trying to project a British debate about "that which God calls sin" onto world Anglicanism.

Church of England bishops agreed in London on Monday to hold a mediated dialogue throughout the 80-million member Communion to reflect on Biblical passages about gays in a way that could make Anglican churches more welcoming to them.

The Communion, which links Anglicans across and beyond the English-speaking world, has been split for years over gay rights and Biblical authority, especially since its US branch - the Episcopal Church - ordained a gay bishop in 2003.

Several of its large African member churches have put up determined opposition to any reform and helped unite traditionalists in a large faction that at times has seemed ready to break away from the more liberal churches in Britain and North America.

"We cannot... allow our time and energy to be sapped by debating that which God has already clearly revealed in Scripture," said Wabukala, chair of the primates' council of the Global Anglican Future Conference (Gafcon).

"Such dialogue only spreads confusion and opens the door to a false gospel," he said in a statement on Wednesday.

Church of England bishops debating ways to accommodate same-sex marriage could not agree on allowing church ceremonies to bless such unions, which it has opposed until now.

Parliament legalised gay nuptials in England and Wales last year and the first are to take place in late March.

The Church's proposal for "facilitated conversations" on homosexuality came after an intense debate on women bishops broke a 20-year impasse last November and paved the way for the first female ordinations in England by late this year.


While the mother church inched toward more openness to gays, Nigeria outlawed same-sex relationships this month and Uganda voted for life imprisonment for some same-sex acts in December.

President Yoweri Museveni has delayed signing the Ugandan law, saying it should be shelved pending further study.

Britain and some other Western countries have threatened to cut aid to governments that pass anti-gay laws. Homosexuality is taboo in Africa and illegal in 37 countries there.

Anglican leaders in those countries have strongly supported the tougher laws. Nigerian media quoted Archbishop Nicholas Okah as saying on Monday that legalising same-sex marriage would lead to "nothing but disaster".

Nigeria and Uganda have the Communion's second and third largest churches after England, according to Church statistics, but are probably ahead in terms of regular churchgoers.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, head of the Church of England and spiritual leader of the whole Communion, sent a message on Wednesday to Anglican church leaders around the world and to the presidents of Nigeria and Uganda urging them not to victimise homosexuals.

He and Archbishop of York John Sentamu recalled a 2005 statement by Anglican primates, or member church heads, saying gays are "children of God, loved and valued by Him and deserving the best we can give - pastoral care and friendship".

Welby left on Thursday for a five-day visit to Africa focused on promoting conflict resolution in South Sudan, Burundi, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo.

- Reuters


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
EACC officers raid Deputy Governo...

EACC officers raided the home of a Deputy Governor as theft case continues in court. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
New IEBC bosses to be named Novem...

New IEBC bosses will be named on November 30. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
DP Ruto has spoilt my name, activ...

DP William Ruto has spoilt my name, activist complains. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Apologise for attack on Auditor G...

Apologise for attack on Auditor General, President Uhuru Kenyatta is told by Kisumu Senator Anyang Nyong'o. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Quit if you can't fight corruptio...

An MP has told President Uhuru Kenyatta to quit office if he cannot fight corruption. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Investigate Uhuru, Ruto for corru...

Investigate President Uhuru Kenyatta and DP William Ruto's offices over corruption, CORD leader Raila Odinga has said. Read more...