Ghana: Methodist Church Launches Book to Respond to Homosexuality

A 47-page booklet titled: 'The Homosexuality Debate: A Response from the Methodist Church Ghana, Accra Diocese', was last Saturday launched in Accra by the Accra Diocesan Bishop of the Methodist Church of Ghana, Rt Rev. Samuel Kofi Osabutey.

The booklet seeks to address the issue of homosexuality and the church's stance on the subject and acceptance in the country.

Among other things, it would create awareness and educate Christians about the dangers of the practice of homosexuality (man and man having sexual relationship) and to encourage the youth to abide by the natural heterosexual (man-woman) relationship that was accepted by the Holy Bible.

Launching the booklet at Kpeehe Resurrection congregation at Caprice in Accra, Rt Rev. Osabutey said the booklet was the church's response to homosexuality and not a response to the stance of the Methodist Church of the United Kingdom on the legalisation of same sex marriage.

He explained that the decision to produce the booklet was conceived during a conference held in May last year when news had it that Ghana was considering legalising homosexuality.

"The Methodist Church is against homosexuality just as the Bible is against it but we do not condemn those who practise but rather, through this booklet, we wish to give them counsel and urge them to change their ways," the Rt Rev Osabutey added.

The Accra Diocesan Bishop stated that this booklet was to serve as an educational tool on homosexuality as well as the church's way of preventing its youth from developing homosexual tendencies.

Professor Ato Essuman, a former Lay Chairman of the Church who spearheaded the writing of the booklet, in an interview said the booklet was designed by a diverse group of professionals including doctors, lawyers, psychologists, and reverends to combine the various perspectives on homosexuality and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transvestite (LGBT) community.

He urged all, especially the youth, to read the booklet as it contained key insights to the debates on homosexuality and the stance on the church as well as other bodies in society.

Professor Essuman disclosed that the church did not oppose those who practice or were developing an affinity to homosexuality, as the booklet provided seven contact numbers that individuals could contact to seek the aid of counselors.

"We hope that this would be a teaching tool to help society make the right choice in terms of their sexuality," he added.

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