In the better late than never department, the Archbishops of Canterbury and York have finally issued a short but pointed statement addressing homophobia, in particular the turn it has taken in Uganda and Nigeria. Citing a 2005 Communiqué of the Primates, the Archbishops reminded all that "the victimisation or diminishment of human beings whose affections
happen to be ordered towards people of the same sex is anathema to us."
Recent examples of this diminishment were reported from the Primate of Nigeria, Nicholas Okoh, who is quoted as saying that any support for same-sex relationships represents an effort similar to that made in the Garden of Eden, to "dethrone God" and will "lead to extinction.... It is a dead end and it is not in the interest of humanity." He declared that it is "refusal to accept the scripture for what it is, authority for life and practice following God." Okoh also commended the President of Nigeria for pushing the anti-gay law, which goes far beyond criminalizing same-sex conduct, to prohibit support and association.
We have not seen the end of this. Meanwhile, it is distressing that an Archbishop can take such a narrow and ill-informed reading of Scripture as the primary basis for his thinking. To call it a "literal" reading is an insult to literalism.
Tobias Stanislas Haller BSG