images-1.thumbnail.jpgIn March 2008 Pastor Rick Warren declared Uganda to be a purpose driven nation, joining Rwanda in a program 

aimed at helping the country’s leaders live purposeful lives that will build up their nation.

Pastor Rick embraced, literally and figuratively, Ugandan pastor Martin Ssempa, his partner in the fight on AIDS in Africa. Martin Ssempa–who is a close personal friend of the very evangelical Ugandan First Lady–has appeared on stage at Saddleback Church twice and is known in Uganda for burning condoms in the name of Jesus, called on newspapers to publish the names of known homosexuals and urged the imprisonment of gays.

Ssempa isn’t the only Ugandan power broker with a strong anti-gay streak. Minister of Ethics and Integrity, Dr. James Nsaba Buturo yesterday told a conference organized by Defend the Family International–a U.S.-based homophobic hate group with a pseudo-Christian cover–that

he will soon submit a bill on pornography and homosexuality for discussion in Parliament.

Buturo claims that pornography is a root caue of homosexuality, making the victims of pornography

easily susceptible to the vice of homosexuality.

Buturo says the bills he is introducing would create laws against homosexuality and would

also engage in sensitizing schools and churches in the fight against this vice.

Scott Lively, president of Defend the Family International, who was attending the conference, naturally supports criminalizing of homosexuality but says

the government should subject the criminals of homosexuality to a therapy rather than imprisoning them…recovering from homosexuality…is the main objective of those fighting homosexuality and not to punish[ing] homosexuals through imprisonment…even schools should borrow this idea of therapy in dealing with gay students.

Defend the Family is part of Abiding Truth Ministries and their Pro-Family Charitable Trust which

donates money for projects that:

1. Help individuals recover from homosexuality,
2. Oppose the recruitment of young people into the "gay" lifestyle or its defense, or
3. Counter the effect of pro-"gay" propaganda in media and culture.

I wonder how much the Pro-Family Charitable Trust can  raise for un-gaying Ugandans and if they will be given an exclusive contract by the Ugandan government for that?  Will funding for anti-homosexual programs come out of HIV/AID preventiondollars donated by world governments and NGOs?

And just how does this fit into Rick Warren’s purpose driven manifesto, especially now that Pastor Rick is trying to come off a bit more gay-friendly?

Lisa Derrick

Lisa Derrick

Los Angeles native, attended UC Berkeley and Loyola Marymount University before punk rock and logophilia overtook her life. Worked as nightclub columnist, pop culture journalist and was a Hollywood housewife before writing for and editing Sacred History Magazine. Then she discovered the thrill of politics. She also appears frequently on the Dave Fanning Show, one of Ireland's most popular radio broadcasts.

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