Nov 16, 2011

ANGLICAN BISHOP CHRISTOPHER SSENYONJO/UGANDA: '...I know that God loves you. Because God has created you different it doesn't mean that he doesn't love you.'

Anglican Bishop Christopher Ssenyonjo, St. Pauls Foundation, Kampala, Uganda
¨Bishop Christopher Senyonjo is an advocate for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights at a time when Uganda's Parliament has reopened discussion on a bill which would penalize gays and lesbians with prison sentences and even capital punishment. The bill would also criminalize "promoting" homosexuality and protecting the identities of homosexuals.

Senyonjo first began counseling gays and lesbians and lobbying for their rights in Uganda in 1998. Guided in his activism by his understanding of human sexuality, and a firm conviction that God does not discriminate, he has endured personal attacks on his character and on his faith while fighting against the misinformation and hate speech surrounding the African LGBT experience...¨

¨It has been not easy for me; I have suffered. My church didn't like my approach so they make it very hard for me.¨ Bishop Christopher
¨In 2001 I started counseling LGBT people when I retired as the assistant bishop of the Anglican Church in Uganda. I began getting involved with LGBT and marginalized people in 1998 when some young men came to me, rejected by their family, by their peers. They were rejected by the schools as if they were not human beings.

One young person who was working with them, a youth worker, introduced them to me. He said these people are so rejected, what can you do? And he knew about what I was doing as a counselor. I listened to their stories, these young people, and of course I discovered that they were gay.

For being gay they were hated, even being told that God did not love them, which was really terrible because some of them were even contemplating suicide because of that kind of rejection. If people say, 'Even God doesn't love you unless you change', the message they hear from the church is: 'Change your sexuality if you are to be loved even by God.'

I did some courses on human sexuality and marriage in my doctoral program, so I could understand. I said, 'No. I believe God loves you. I am a bishop. I know that God loves you. Because God has created you different it doesn't mean that he doesn't love you.'

So they took heart when they heard this. They are alive today but I have known many who have committed suicide...¨ please read it all, HERE

·  Thanks to All Africa, sidebar
·  Thanks to Bishop Christopher Ssenyonjo, Uganda
·  Thanks to The St. Pauls Foundation, Kampala


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