Even with the existence of a non-enforcement anti-gay law in Nigeria, the gay community still blossoms and even has a long existing gay church.
The first gay church in Nigeria, known as the House of Rainbow, celebrated their 10th Year Anniversary on Friday 2nd September 2016.
The Nigerian gay church, which has its members scattered in different parts of the country and even beyond, held their anniversary party in London with over 60 people in attendance.
Gay Church Celebrates
The gay church was founded by Jide Macaulay, Nigeria’s first openly gay pastor. According to him, it all started as a case of the rejected stones becoming the cornerstone. The theme of the church is centered on Testimony, Grace and Glory and for the past 10 years, they have been active in creating a safe space for Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transgender, Intersex and Queer people who worship and celebrate God just as they are.
“In this new decade we are proud to announce the growth of our mission, Eight leaders in Nigeria, Three in Ghana, Two in South Africa, Two in Uganda, Two in Zambia, One each in Botswana, Liberia, Tanzania, Malawi, Sweden and the United Kingdom respectively,” he said.
He also shared a memory in celebration of their anniversary.
Well, as awful as it may sound, the House Of Rainbow has been in place for 10-years and held its first meeting at Ikeja Capital City Hotel Lagos, with about 32 people in attendance. In the same year, the gay church hosted the largest number of LGBT people of faith gathering in Lagos of over 200 people, for the New Year’s Eve celebration.
The church currently has 13 active groups with 17 volunteer local leaders, 11 cities and in 7 countries, Nigeria, Ghana, Malawi, Lesotho, Burundi, Zambia, and the United Kingdom. The church consists of both Muslims and Christians and has performed over 10 Same Sex weddings or blessings in the last decade in Africa and Europe.
They also have a Pocket Devotional for LGBT, where over 10,000 copies are printed and distributed occasionally. Due to the non-acceptance of this group in Nigeria, the House of Rainbow has received severe criticisms from Nigerian journalists and in 2008 they were attacked in brutal assaults and death threats.