Who Are The Church’s Victims?

Who Are The Church’s Victims?

Pastor Abel Damina’s sermon where he calls out the church for being responsible for Sammie Okposo’s death is making the rounds on social media. I watched the video, and I noted that the man said a lot of things.

“Selective morality…” he said of the church.

“The cruelty of the church, the wickedness in the hearts of people that are in churches…”

“The only organization on earth that wounds its wounded is the church…”

“He dies and they say, ‘Oh, what a loss.’ Indeed. A loss, right? But you were the people that killed him. What kills a man fast is rejection…”

This post is not about Sammie Okposo. May he rest in peace.

I want to however address the irony in the words of Pastor Damina. Because he said a lot of things that are at once true and ironic.

The church is cruel.

The church delights in selective morality and rejection.

The church constantly wounds its wounded.

But I wonder if Pastor Damina’s outrage would be stoked if the victim of these atrocities by the church was a queer Nigerian.

There is a memory from my past that I will never forget, largely because it was a moment was shocking to me, that it became a turning point in my life.

Before 2014, I was already struggling with my faith, because accepting who I was meant that every Sunday service made me leave the church feeling unclean and tormented with doubts; and because I was starting to have questions about the kind of being God was and the nature of the people that worshipped him.

It was a struggle and I didn’t know what to believe or how to make my existence as a gay Christian make sense to me.

Then January 2014 happened, and Nigeria’s antigay law was signed, and the fear that came from being made a target by the government wrapped itself around me every time I was out and about on the streets, mingling with people, feeling accused and judged by the stares of passersby. I was positive that I was wearing the scarlet letters of my sexuality on my forehead, and that it’d just be a matter of time before a mob would pounce on me on the street.

In a way, I went to church that following Sunday to seek comfort, some sort of reassurance that outside there may be a minefield of danger for someone like me, but in here, where Jesus resides, I could find the safety that would make me feel alright. Even with all the struggles I had about my faith, on that Sunday, I went to church believing that I could find the solace that would give me the strength to carry on.

That was not what I got.

Instead, what I found was a congregation whipped into a worshipful frenzy of thanks to President Goodluck Jonathan for giving Nigeria what she wants: a legitimized condemnation of the gays. They were singing praises about it. They were positive that god had worked through his servant – the president – to arrest the abomination that is homosexuality.

I was devastated. The streets suddenly seemed safer because in here, my fear had crystallized and taken the shape of the pastors and choir and worshippers in the pews.

I didn’t stay till the end of the service. I walked out of that church, certain that I would never again step foot into another house of God to worship him.

Selective morality.

Cruelty of the church.

Wickedness in the hearts of the people of the church.

Wounding its wounded.

Yes, Pastor Damina, you are right about the church. But do you even know who the actual victims are?

The good pastor makes the church out to be like an institution filled with people who won’t hesitate to cut down those who’ve done wrong, and yet, when a certain pastor whose sickly photos are currently trending was called out for his sexually violent past, the church flocked around him and blockaded him from suffering any consequence of his wrongdoing. There are constant stories of churches whose priorities are their image and the protection of the wrongdoer, over the consideration of the victim’s pain.

And yet, all you have to become is get outed as a Christian whose only crime is that you love differently, and you will know how swift and wrathful the judgment of the church can be. Imagine if in a bid to protest their inhumanity, I stepped out to the front of the church that Sunday in 2014, and I tried to humanize homosexuality by telling that congregation – my fellow Christians and human beings – that I am one of them and I am gay too. Can you imagine what would have happened to me?

Yes, I’m sure you can imagine. And we know it wouldn’t have been kind.

Pastor Damina is right about the church. But does he know who the true victims are?

Written by Pink Panther

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  1. Kiwi
    November 27, 15:49 Reply

    This is just Abel Damina capitalizing on Sammy’s demise to condition the sheeple to be kind to him when he eventually finds himself at the center of a similar scandal.

    We all know he wouldn’t be so gracious if Sammy had “committed a sin” he, Abel, couldn’t relate with.

  2. FRED
    November 27, 15:58 Reply

    You have already proferred the answer.
    His response would certainly rely on selective morality.
    It never gets old

  3. Precious Oraz
    November 27, 19:56 Reply

    The church draws and quarters evetuone whose “sin” it cannot sweep under the rug, or absolutely disdains.

    I mean, look at Roberts Liardon, the guy who chronicled the lives of several “great men of God”

    One confession that he’d had sex with a man during a retreat he went for and his life, his career, and ministry have been completely cancelled by the Church.

    Same with Ray Boltz, the guy who wrote and sang “I Pledge Allegiance To The Lamb.” Confessing to a sexual relationship with a man was the end of his career as a gospel musician. Stripped of his position as choir pastor, stopped getting invitations to minister, the church cancelled him.

    Meanwhile, bastards like Pastor Brian Houston of Hillsong who abused women, and his father who abused children, as well as Fatoyinrapist and their other cohorts would rape women and children but the church will jejely keep quiet.

    The church would always protect those who prey on others. Just do not be gay. And do not get caught. And even if you’re caught, the Church would, most times, contort itself into the most grotesque shapes to rise to the defense of said predators and violators.

    Fucking bastards!!!!

    • DarkQuinn
      November 27, 21:39 Reply

      Sad really…. Homosexuality is where they draw the line … Sex between consenting adults o…. Rapists, scam artists, swindlers,thieves, pedophiles, wife beaters are cool but God forbid you like men or are a lesbian…. The hypocrisy of the Church is sickening!

  4. KayRu
    November 28, 18:26 Reply

    You may call it selective cruelty or selective ignorance…it is your (our) opinion. I read an article on Facebook where this guy said Hausa are so hypocritical that they all know homosexual exist even in the days of Moh’d yet they condemn it daily.

    My point, if someone’s doctrine does not suit your believe, get out. We keep calling out on christians because of our sexuality forgetting that it is what the Bible teaches. No one is forcing you to be a christian, no one is saying you must come to church. So being so petty because a group does not accept you for who you are.

    Did you accept yourself at first? Why did you battle so much with your sexuality before accepting it? How do you expect them to accept what they have no idea of?

    At times for your own sanity,make excuse for people and please, let the hate on christianity or Islam stop. E no make sense at all.

    I come in peace o

    • Disco
      December 01, 07:47 Reply

      The self hate here is strong! Please heal!

  5. Lucious
    November 29, 18:09 Reply

    Pinkie when are we getting an opinion piece about Jeffery Dahmer ?

    Anyone else seen that series on Netflix? Cringes!!!

    • Pink Panther
      November 29, 18:20 Reply

      I would have loved to write it, but I have intentionally stayed away from that show. It’s something I know will be triggering for me, and I don’t want that. I do hope I’ll find someone who’s seen it and wants to share their opinion on it.

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