Anglican Primate of the Church of Nigeria
The Most Reverend Peter Jasper Akinola (born 27 January 1944, in Abeokuta) is Anglican Primate of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Archbishop of Province III of Nigeria, and Bishop of the capital city, Abuja.
- "We in Africa are always on the receiving end. We have had human slavery, political slavery, economic slavery and now religious slavery. We in the church are saying no. We are prepared to live by what God says, not what you say. Man shall not sleep with man, woman shall not sleep with woman."
- Interview with Associated Press December 2003
- "I didn’t create poverty. This church didn’t create poverty. Poverty is not an issue, human suffering is not an issue at all, they were there before the creation of mankind."
- Reported in the East African Standard January 2004, now only available online here.
- "We will not, on the altar of money, mortgage our conscience, mortgage our faith, mortgage our salvation."
- (Explaining the decision to reject American funding as a protest over liberal theology and practices, including the ordination of homosexuals.)
- "They are trying to make my God a liar. That I will not accept. If that's the case, then better to be poor and loyal to God than to have all the money in the world."
- "To opine that, unknown to humans, God had hitherto created some people to be homosexuals and lesbians (i.e., sexual orientations) is tantamount to creating God in our own image and introducing a cancerous element into the fabric of the African understanding of marriage and family."
- "Homosexuality and lesbianism, like divorce, breed a society of single parents which gives rise to a generation of bastards. And in the context of much poverty and lack of education, this further produces an ill-bred generation of hooligans, portending much terror to the peace and stability of the society."
- "In a society where many women are finding it difficult to have husbands of their own due to depletion of men by many factors, homosexuality will exacerbate the disequilibrium, leading to much social unrest."
- "All Nigerians must learn from Christ and be determined to imbibe the lesson of divine condescension."
- "We must never forget that if Christ had been so inclined, he would not have come and there will be no Christmas to celebrate."
- "By your victory at the polls, you have put to shame the revisionists and their agenda in the Church of Christ, and particularly in the Episcopal Church of United States of America (ECUSA). I hope that by your election victory, these ordained men and women will feel rebuked and be forced to repent of this grievous sin of repudiating the word of God, and to seek genuine restoration."
- From An Open Congratulatory Message to the President George W Bush
- "Let there be no illusions. The Communion is broken and fragmented. The Communion will break."
- "Britain has joined its brethren in the 'civilised West' to legitimise civil partnerships, which to us simply means same-sex marriages. They are also putting a ban on preaching because it offends Muslim minorities. Britain has, of course, made Sunday a working day."
- "a misfit, a wolf in shepherd’s clothing and one of the end-time agents of the devil sent to lead astray those who would have believed in God."
- (referring to the Anglican Primate of South Africa, Archibishop Winston Njongonkulu Ndungane of Cape Town)
- "May we at this stage remind our Muslim brothers that they do not have the monopoly of violence in this nation. Nigeria belongs to all of us – Christians, Muslims and members of other faiths. No amount of intimidation can Change this time-honoured arrangement in this nation. C.A.N. may no longer be able to contain our restive youths should this ugly trend continue."
- (Statement issued in his capacity as President, Christian Association of Nigeria, February 2006, "on the ugly development of renewed religious fanaticism in this country")
- "The Church commends the law-makers for their prompt reaction to outlaw same-sex relationships in Nigeria and calls for the bill to be passed since the idea expressed in the bill is the moral position of Nigerians regarding human sexuality."
- (Communique on the Same Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Bill 2006
- The 2006 Bill, as well as criminalising same-sex marriage, also proposed to criminalise "Registration of Gay Clubs, Societies and organizations" and "Publicity, procession and public show of same-sex amorous relationship through the electronic or print media physically, directly, indirectly or otherwise", on penalty of up to 5 years imprisonment.
- "We remind our churches to maintain the emphasis on the war against indecent dressing"
- (Pastoral Letter September 2006)
- "Is the Church of England an Anglican church? The church did not start in Canterbury, the church did not start in Rome. Whether Canterbury is Anglican or not is immaterial. We are Anglicans. They are the Church of England."
- (Interview in Christianity Today, October 2006)
- "Self-seeking, self-glory, that is not me. No. Many people say I embarrass them with my humility."
- (Interview in The New York Times, 25 December 2006)
- "Homosexuality seeks to destroy marriage as we know it, unity as we know it, family life as we know it, so how can we endorse that? That is completely outside what God planned for humanity. When God created man, he saw man was alone and added a female mate for him. Why didn't he pick one of the baboons, one of the lions to make his partner? He could have done so. He didn't. Homosexuality is nothing short of sinning against God with impunity as you are going against his will. Homosexuality is wrong, it's from the devil."
- (Interview in The Christian Science Monitor, 8 January 2007)
- "Whoever God is calling to govern must put God first, must know the people, must know what their aspirations are, must know what their needs are and address those needs. In that way they will be blessed, they will rejoice and God too will be honoured."
- (Interview in the Guardian newspaper, 24 January 2007)
- "He will do what we tell him."
- (To another Primate at Dromantine in 2005, about the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams. Reported in the Guardian, 14 January 2007)
- "I was shocked to my marrow the very first time I heard the Church is saying a man can marry a man. What? It is from that shock, that surprise, how is that possible? Is it a kind of experiment or something? They are sick or tired of normal heterosexual relationships? How could that be?"
- (Interview in The Times, 5 July 2007)
- "This Conference:... (3) recognises that there are among us persons who experience themselves as having a homosexual orientation. Many of these are members of the Church and are seeking the pastoral care, moral direction of the Church, and God's transforming power for the living of their lives and the ordering of relationships. We commit ourselves to listen to the experience of homosexual persons and we wish to assure them that they are loved by God and that all baptised, believing and faithful persons, regardless of sexual orientation, are full members of the Body of Christ; (4) while rejecting homosexual practice as incompatible with Scripture, calls on all our people to minister pastorally and sensitively to all irrespective of sexual orientation and to condemn irrational fear of homosexuals"
- (Resolution 1.10 on Human Sexuality, Lambeth Conference 1988.)
- "The victimisation or diminishment of human beings whose affections happen to be ordered towards people of the same sex is anathema to us."
- (Statement of the Primates of the Anglican Communion at Dromantine, February 2005)
- "The archbishop's support for this law [the Same Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Bill 2006, see above] violates numerous Anglican Communion documents that call for a "listening process" involving gay Christians and their leaders. But his contempt for international agreements also extends to Articles 18-20 of the United Nations Universal Declaration on Human Rights, which articulates the rights to freedom of thought, conscience, religion, association and assembly. Surprisingly, few voices -- Anglican or otherwise -- have been raised in opposition to the archbishop. When I compare this silence with the cacophony that followed the Episcopal Church's decision to consecrate the Rt. Rev. Gene Robinson, a gay man who lives openly with his partner, as the bishop of New Hampshire, I am compelled to ask whether the global Christian community has lost not only its backbone but its moral bearings."
- (John Chane, Bishop of Washington)