In a country that is trying to pass a law that would make homosexuality punishable by the death penalty, few voices speak out in favor of justice and human rights as courageously as Retired Anglican Bishop Christopher Senyonjo from West Buganda, Uganda.
On Thursday, May 20, 2010, Bishop Ssenyonjo spoke out about his country's draconian measure as not only an affront to the United Nation's Declaration of Human Rights or his own country's system of extended families, but also challenges the basic Christian teaching of love and inclusion. He suggests that education is key to stemming the homophobic tide that has a grip on his country right now.
Kerry Chaplin and I represented California Faith for Equality at a lunchtime conversation hosted by Irvine United Congregational Church (UCC) in Orange County along with 30 other people. All the participants favored the concept of showing compassion in the midst of a hostile political and religious environment.
Comparisons and connections were drawn between the passage of Prop 8 here in California, support from the conservative Rick Warren and his Saddleback Church in Riverside, CA. for "ex-gay ministries," and the breakaway groups such as St. James Episcopal Church in Newport Beach, CA., to the current homophobic environment in Uganda. Bishop Senyonjo encouraged supporters of equality to be vigilant about keeping the pressure on the Ugandan government, as well as working locally to affect international law.
CFE urges all persons of faith to join Bishop Christopher in his call to end homophobia and stop the spread of hatred and discrimination in Uganda and around the world.