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Gay church re-opens in Lagos ...Clergy’s son leads “revival”

in NIGERIA, 25/03/2013

Less than five years after Nigeria’s only gay church, House of Rainbow, was attacked by some Lagos residents and consequently closed down in Nigeria, the church has returned to the country with three secret groups.

Less than five years after Nigeria’s only gay church, House of Rainbow, was attacked by some Lagos residents and consequently closed down in Nigeria, the church has returned to the country with three secret groups.

With this development, Nigeria appears to lead other countries where the church currently operates. Founded by Nigerian-born gay, Rev. Rowland Jide Macaulay, House of Rainbow, which came to Nigeria in 2006, is “an inclusive and affirming religious community open and welcome to all people including sexual minorities and marginalised people, a monthly gathering of ‘people of faith’ for ‘prayer and praise’, which focuses on the person’s journey towards reconciliation of sexuality and spirituality.”

Macaulay, a trained lawyer and son of a reverend, is leading the comeback even though he remains in self-imposed exile in London, where sources said he currently enjoys lots of financial sponsorship for the movement.

Unlike in the pre-2008 when the church openly operated at Jakande Estate, Isolo, and Berger in Lagos, Macaulay, who is the backbone of the movement, is not secretive of the meeting places and time of the church in Nigeria, but has instituted a very stringent process to screen prospective members coming to join the church. It was learnt that aside Nigeria, the church has two groups each in Ghana and United Kingdom (UK).

“We now have new groups in Malawi and Ghana. There are currently three groups in Nigeria, two each in Ghana and the UK and one each in Malawi, Lesotho and Burundi. All these groups are managed by volunteers, who are appointed through a rigorous ‘Local Leader Application’ process.

“We currently have 12 appointed local leaders in six countries. Currently we have over 25 outstanding applications for local leaders including, but not limited to the following locations: France, Netherlands, Cote d’Ivoire, Sierra-Leone. This has continued to strengthen the interest and work of House of Rainbow particularly in Africa,” Macaulay noted.

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