The Church of Nigeria Standing Committee Speaks. Who speaks back?

The Church of Nigeria (Anglican) has had a Standing Committee meeting and issued the following pronouncements:

From the message to the nation:

“The Church affirms our commitment to the total rejection of the evil of homosexuality which is a perversion of human dignity and encourages the National Assembly to ratify the Bill prohibiting the legality of homosexuality since it is incongruent with the teachings of the Bible, Quran and the basic African traditional values.”

Well, they are clear, yes? All comments from the realignment crowd that tried to mollify that stance are now displaced by the reality. The Church of Nigeria believes homosexuality is evil and the Bill outlawing any gatherings of, or support of, homosexual persons good. Bishop Minns, what say you now? Anglican Communion Network, any interest in saying anything at all about the stance of the Church of Nigeria on this matter? What say you now?

And then there is the message to the Church.

“We also discerned afresh that the voice of the people is not always the voice of God since, as in the case of the Israelites and the golden calf, the voice of the people can actually be rebellion. The serious implication for us is that when our culture, tradition and disposition go against the Word of God, we must choose to be on the Lord’s side. The time-tested and inerrant rule of life must remain the written Word of God. To toy with these in the name of cultural accommodation or contextualization can only lead to worship of pseudo gods and the inevitable attendant confusion and disharmony, as in the case in the worldwide Anglican Communion…

There are lessons for today’s Church: As we face the real danger of sliding into syncretism, apostasy, and the inevitable divine judgment, what is needed is nothing short of the call by Moses: “Who is on the Lord’s side?” And those on the Lord’s side must not hesitate, whatever the cost, to make their position clearly known. We must resist every attempt from any quarters to be muddled or messed up with those of contrary disposition in any unholy alliance, lest like Israel we get our fingers burnt.

In all these, we as a church must press on with the mission committed to us – to make disciples of all nations. That is why we have taken steps to elect bishops for the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Nomadic Mission, and the outreach to the scattered flock of God in North America. We are still opening up more areas to direct access to the gospel message by creating more missionary dioceses. This is capital-intensive and Dioceses should therefore demonstrate greater commitment to the endowment fund project. We also encourage individuals who are endowed to support the Church in her missionary emphasis.

As part of our growing mission emphasis, we have also sought to understand better ways of understanding and evangelizing our neighbors in other faiths, particularly the Islam in the context of growing worldwide concerns. It is apparent that there is a worldwide Islamic agenda which has the political domination of every nation in view. Considering the negative consequences of this development, it is therefore imperative for Christians to be properly informed about what Islam stands for and dialogue with Muslims only when it is done on equal terms.”

Got it? The West is apostate, the true mission from the true faith in the true province will expand to wherever it wishes to go. Send money. Islam is a terror and we will only talk to them when it is on equal terms. In a few short paragraphs the Church of Nigeria squashes the Windsor Report and takes on imperial episcopacy.

OK. Nigeria speaks. What now?

Will anyone from the Network ever comment about anything Nigeria is up to? For that matter, will any of the Primates, including our own, issue any statement concerning the positions of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican)?

More later.


  1. The reason Duncan & Co. don't respond to Nigeria's incitement of hatred against homosexuals is that they agree with it and are too beholden to the Akinolans to contradict them anyway. Why would we expect any other reaction from them? It's like expecting George Bush to criticize Dick Cheney.

  2. It has been apparent now for some time that the "Windsor Compliant" bishops (who also accede to the Lambeth resolutions) only observe the positions hostile to persons with a same sex orientation & ignore all the rest (viz., recognizing that such persons are children of God, in need of pastoral care, that church boundaries must be respected, etc.,) & that Canterbury will silently condone this position.

    It is not encouraging.

  3. There is a tone in that statement which indicates what I believe is the real underlying problem that Akinola & Co. have with ECUSA, et al.: racism. I had a discussion with a dean from one of the progressive seminaries in NYC who related that this all began with a few of the African members of the Church reacting to our innovations by openly asking, "Who do these whites think they are?" It's ironic that the anti-colonialist sentiments expressed in the foregoing are being met by distinctly colonialist strategies, and funded by outside sources which ultimately could care less, as long as the cause is a reactionary, conservative one.

  4. They would give up any truth, would follow any leader, even one who spews vitriol and rolls in his pride, as long as that leader supports that one point of view that is all important to them. I've said that they have a new creed and all who do not subscribe to it are not True Christians.

    Why don't any of us recall that to deny that homosexuals are Children of God and that we are required to provide pastoral care for them and that we cannot persucute them was decided at the Primates meeting last year? To not do so was declared anathema in the worldwide communion.


  5. Just for the record - The Canadian Primate and the entire house of Bishops unanimously condemned the Nigerian - anti GLT policies.

  6. You gotta love (NOT) how AngChNigeria thinks that Islam is sooo terrible, and must be confronted at every turn...

    ...EXCEPT when they want to cite how "homosexuality . . . is incongruent with the teachings of the . . . Quran"! >:-/

    I think you've got the focus in the right place, Mark. As tragic as this is for Nigerian LGBTs (esp. Anglican ones), it's not really about the Church in Nigeria---it's about their (explicit/implicit) Anglican collaborators everywhere else!

  7. I just wonder, though -- given our "separation of church and state" regulations and the interest by the IRS in churches who involve themselves in politics (well, some of them -- like those who openly oppose the war, not necessarily those who espouse GOP (God's Own Party) candidates and interests.

    Yes, every person should be informed about where to vote, what the issues are, what both sides of the issue are and encouraged to make an informed choice based on what THEY think and believe, not what they are TOLD to think or believe.

    It's important to have people of integrity in politics (dam few of them in ours, I think) but edging ever closer to theocracy is something to be concerned about too.

    But this was a good post, Mark. You always make me think. Thanks.

  8. What should be put next to this is the sermon preached at the consecration of the Rt. Rev. William H. Love in the Diocese of Albany on Saturday, Sept. 16th... preached by the Rev. Michael Flynn of Fresh Wind Ministries. I wonder of it has yet appeared on the web?

    I'd paraphrase it but it needs to be seen, read and well marked.

  9. Nigeria GDP per capita=$1,400 US; USA GDP per capita=$41,800 US; ECUSA=full bellied hypocrites=real hatred.

    See how simple it is?

    Forgive me if I offend you.

  10. The difference, anonymous, is that most people in ECUSA, I'm positive, would do anything they could do to help ordinary Nigerians out of poverty and into a better life.

    I don't see how these things are connected, anyway. Is persecution of a minority somehow going to raise the standard of living for everybody there?

  11. Anonymous is right, though. Look at this article with the headline, Nigeria's oil hope and despair. Quote: "The west African state of Nigeria is the continent's biggest oil exporter. But despite its huge energy reserves and potential wealth, millions of people live in extreme poverty....It has earned the Nigerian government billions of pounds. Yet the communities in the Delta say they continue to live in poverty."

    So something is definitely wrong, and we should do more to help. Perhaps while we're arguing for gay rights there (and here), we should also speak out forcefully against this injustice and try to make a difference.

  12. That stuff about taking on Islam reads like a funding proposal to US NeoCon covert warriors. Sad.

    Not as sad though as the condition of all of Africa, post colonialism. If we don't like what is going on in those states, we who profit from the global economic system have a lot to answer for.


OK... Comments, gripes, etc welcomed, but with some cautions and one rule:
Cautions: Calling people fools, idiots, etc, will be reason to bounce your comment. Keeping in mind that in the struggles it is difficult enough to try to respect opponents, we should at least try.