The Questions about Uganda

Just before Christmas, the Primus of our church visited Uganda. Since there have been a number of comments made on his blog justifying the trip in terms of it being important to deal with those who have different views.

I’ve not heard anyone question the idea of a Primus dealing with those of different views. After all, clergy deal with people with different views all the time.

There are plenty of unanswered questions about bishops from here going to Uganda for formal events though and there are certainly some of us in the Scottish Episcopal Church who are surprised that Bishop David was encouraged by the College of Bishops to accept this invitation.

There are those in the Ugandan churches who are complicit in incitement to violence, hate speech and using their influence to try to pass laws which would persecute and imprison fellow members of the body of Christ.

The question any bishop faces when thinking about going on a formal visit to Uganda is whether they might be seen by it to be standing alongside those who are subject to violence, persecution and torture or whether they might be seen to be standing alongside those might be said to be encouraging it.

Dealing with difference doesn’t come into it.

This video caught my eye this week. It says in just a few minutes more than I can say on here and is well worth a watch.


  1. Rosemary Hannah says

    Did the Primus take the time to look up Bishop Senyonjo – quite the bravest man I have ever heard speak?

  2. As an Athiest, i obviously don’t care about such things… But the above video doesn’t play on Apple products… and for those artistic thespians who have taken a bite of the forbidden fruit, this might be a problem!

    • Gosh how odd, I thought that the reason for chosing to bite the Apple was that things just worked…

    • it plays on my Mac Mini running Mountain Lion just fine.

    • Bro David says

      The issue is that the version of the video that Kelvin has embedded is a Flash video. Apple iOS devices, such as the iPad, do not support Flash video because Adobe never successfully made a mobile version of Flash video for iOS. An Apple Mac computer with the Flash video plugin installed has no problem showing the video as Kelvin has embedded it.

      If you are on an iOS device follow the link above to the related article in the NY Times and the Times website will serve up the HTML 5 version of the video that will play on the iOS device.

      Blessings Father K. We cannot expect that you are versed in all things technical.

  3. I’ve gone to his blog, in hopes of finding a post written later, about how, perhaps in private (maybe even in public during a sermon!), the Primus talked with leaders of the church in Uganda about how homosexuality and those who are lesbian, gay, and bisexual are not evil. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find anything like that. More than anything, that is what saddens me. I fear for the safety of my gay brothers and sister in Uganda.

    Le sigh.

  4. Fr Dougal says

    Having been to Uganda (in a much less exalted capacity), I can assure you that some of have, quietly and gently and at a more local level, stressed that bashing people over the heads with bibles (or worse) wasn’t an option. If you were Christian, all are made in God’s image and are worthy of respect, prayer and love.

  5. Indeed, Dougal – I’ve got good reasons for knowing that folk from African countries have a variety of views about sexuality.

    However that doesn’t change the fact that the new Archbishop of Uganda, whose enthronment Bishop David was attending, had recently advocated imprisonment for those who are gay.

  6. Bro David says

    I realize that he was between the proverbial rock and the hard place, but I wish that +David could have felt more called to be prophetic than reconciling in this case.

  7. Rhea he hasn’t answered my direct question on exactly that question: whether he said or did anything at all supportive to of the civil rights of LGBT people while there. Bro David, Kelvin is quite a technical wiz actually. You’re obviously not following the advice of Mae West when it comes to men: ‘I treat the cute ones as clever and the clever ones as cute’. In fairness, I don’t know how she handled those who are clearly both. 🙂

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