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LGBT Christians in Africa: A prime focus for new videos

The Rev. Jide Macaulay (Click the image to watch his video for the #AskJide project.)
The Rev. Jide Macaulay (Click the image to watch his video for the #AskJide project.)

For years, Anglo-Nigerian pastor Jide Macaulay has challenged the widespread idea that Bible-believing Christians should oppose homosexuality.

Now he wants to spread that message electronically, worldwide, especially in Africa. Macaulay, founder of the gay-friendly House of Rainbow churches in Nigeria, Ghana, the United Kingdom and elsewhere, is seeking to raise £3,000 (about US $4,300) for a video project called #AskJide that “will allow us to share a deeper understanding of scriptures with LGBT people around the world.”

As this JustGiving appeal states:

“The idea of this project is to create a video response to support the teaching of ‘What the Bible Says about Homosexuality.’ Far too many faith leaders and LGBTIQ people live in ignorance of what the Bible says and this project will look to answer many questions.

“The project will address, respond and provide evidence of same-sex relationship in the Bible, also explain what is popularly known as the ‘Terror Texts’ or ‘Clobber Passages,’ and finally the process of reconciliation for LGBT Christians and those struggling with the issues.

“This project will be unique as this will be the first in which a Black African Nigerian Openly Gay Christian Theologian will address this matter publicly. Also in this days that smartphones are revolutionary, people can download the resource for private study and share globally. We are optimistic of reaching millions of people even in the very remote parts of the world especially Africa.

“We have had many successes in Southern Africa which is now in its second year of interventions and we started piloting the intervention in Europe and we are looking at England, Netherlands with a possible extension to France, Germany, Sweden and Czech Republic to mention a few.”

Macaulay’s approach is evident in these excerpts from a 2011 interview in Kenya’s Identity magazine:

Interview with the Rev. Jide Macaulay in Identity magazine.
Interview with the Rev. Jide Macaulay in Identity magazine.

“Jesus said I have not come to judge the world but to save it. The church should be a sanctuary, a refuge where all persons suffering can run to….

“What is largely important is that LGBT people are able to reconcile to God as they are. Our messages are simple. 1 Peter 3: 8-9. ‘Finally, all of you, have unity of spirit, sympathy, love for one another, a tender heart, and a humble mind. …’

“LGBT people are as religious as heterosexual people. …

“We know that LGBT people, their friends and families suffer a great deal. It is … important that LGBT people hear the message of Jesus in Matthew 5: 43-48. ‘You have heard that it was said, “You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.”  But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous.  For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?  And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Macaulay is the British-Nigerian founding pastor and chief executive officer of House Of Rainbow. Born in London, he has been a Christian minister since 1998. He is an author, poet, pastor, preacher and gay rights activist. He states of the #AskJide project:

“We are planning to record an entire series of teachings and materials on what the Bible says about homosexuality. This is an opportunity to educate LGBT people, allies and families. We aim to help families, faith communities across the world.

“This project is the first focusing on the Black African Queer narratives. This project is personal, practical and professional. I am a Black African Nigerian Gay Christian man who loves the Lord. Your donation will help educate many people.

This isn’t the first outreach project of the House of Rainbow. It has operated a safe house in Nigeria for people seeking protection from homophobic attacks and threats.

Last summer, Macaulay led a campaign against a man in Ghana who was using Facebook to locate LGBT people to attack and humiliate. That campaign resulted in the man’s arrest and in Facebook blocking his activities.

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. After his retirement from paid newspaper work in 2011, he launched Erasing 76 Crimes and helped with the Spirit of 76 campaign that assembled a multi-national team of 26 LGBTI rights activists to advocate for change during the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July 2012. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, including the Erasing 76 Crimes news site and the African Human Rights Media Network. Contact him via Twitter @76crimes or by email at Mailing address: 21 Marseille, Laguna Niguel CA 92677 USA.


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