At some point, someone will ask Rowan Williams this question:

But we are not holding our breath:

Has the Anglican Communion, made any inquiries into what Archbishop Peter Akinola of Nigeria knew or did not know about the organized massacre that took the lives of at least 660 Muslims in the Nigerian town of Yelwa in 2004?


One year ago, the details of this massacre were published in a cover story in The Atlantic magazine. Human Rights Watch also filed a report. (The Cafe’s original item is here.)

There is no disputing the fact that the men who did the killing, raping and maming wore tags on their clothing associating them with the Christian Association of Nigeria, and that Akinola was president of CAN when the massacre took place. That does not prove that Akinola was in any way involved in the killings, or that he had foreknowledge of the rampage, but it certainly raises questions, and Akinola’s answers to those questions have been evasive at best.

The Jordanian government thought those questions were serious enough to deny Akinola entry to their country in June. Yet, to our knowledge, no one in a position of leadership in the Anglican Communion has sought to determine the true nature of Akinola’s relationship to the men who carried out the killings, and no one has suggested that perhaps he absent himself from, say, the Primates Meeting, while the leaders of the Communion attempt to determine whether he was complicit in mass murder.

Compare this to the time and money spent on determining which North American dioceses offer “authorized rites” for same-sex blessings, which ones permit un-authorized blessings and which ones prohibit such blessings . And keep in mind that the Windsor Report, which called for a moratorium on such blessings, included among its authors Archbishop Bernard Malango, the former primates of the Church of Central Africa and protector of Robert Mugabe’s favorite bishop.

A portrait is beginning to emerge here of an organization willing to overlook almost anything to settle its internal disputes about the morality of same-sex relationships.

(And you also have to wonder why not a single religion reporter in the English speaking world has looked into this situation, but that’s another matter.)

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3 Comments
  1. Please, I´m sorry, I really am sorry, but the Archbishop of Canterbury is only concerned with ¨issues¨ such as murder/massacre, outcasting/deomonizing, thieving and rape, etc if the DESPOTIC HORRIDNESS becomes exposed/unavoidable INTERNATIONAL incidents …afterall, in Liverpool, during The LAMBETH Conference, Michael Causer, a Gay teenager, of 18, was attacked on Friday 25th July and died (while Lambeth was still in session).

    This viscious example of a hate crime of was ignored by ++Rowan…afterall, The Lambeth Conference was busy sorting out, confabbing, listening to ++Bul denegrate Bishop Robinson while ignoring, REAL MORAL issues that were REALLY happening in the near world around them!

    One wonders what glaring Anglican Communion issues the ABC will mention at TEC General Convention this Summer…ah, the luxury of loftily preached spite and simultaneous denial/pretend!

  2. Luiz Coelho

    If I’m not wrong, a very mild statement came from Lambeth Palace, which, imo, is not really sufficient.

    I command the Café for bringing the topic back to life, because things like that really need to be investigated.

  3. Pat Klemme

    Thank you, Jim Naughton, for renewing this inquiry. I am resigned that we may never learn the facts in this case. It is heartening that it has not been forgotten though.

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