Church of Ireland group urges that Ugandan 'homophobia' be confronted


THE CHURCH of Ireland Changing Attitude group has called on the Taoiseach and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Brian Cowen, and international Anglican primates meeting in Dublin “to confront the problem of homophobia in Uganda”.

It follows the murder there last Wednesday of gay rights campaigner David Kato.

The group said that in recent years “anti-gay feeling in Uganda has been stirred up by religious leaders, a group of USA evangelicals and politicians”.

Senior bishops from Anglican churches worldwide are in Dublin and “needed to assume their responsibilities in tackling homophobia and the churches collusion in it”.

The Anglican primate of the Church of the Province of Uganda, Most Rev Henry Luke Orombi, is among seven primates of the Anglican Communion who have boycotted the Primates Meeting now under way at the Emmaus Centre near Swords, Co Dublin.

The primates of Nigeria, Uganda, west Africa, southeast Asia, South America, Jerusalem and the Middle East and of the Province of the Indian Ocean, strongly object to gay clergy and same-sex blessings. They refused to attend this week’s meeting because US Episcopal Church primate Bishop Katharine Jefferts-Schori is there. Gay clergy and same-sex blessings have been approved by the Episcopal Church.

Canon Charles Kenny, secretary of Changing Attitude Ireland, said the Irish Government was a major development aid donor to Uganda. He recalled that last June the Department of Foreign Affairs was briefed in Dublin “by the retired Anglican Ugandan Bishop Christopher Senyonjo on the problem of the Christian-backed anti-gay crusade in Uganda”.

He described the bishop as “a rare courageous voice in the conservative Anglican Church in Uganda”.

  • Bishop Jefferts-Schori will preach in Dublin’s Christ Church Cathedral at the 9am Eucharist next Sunday.