Church leaders in Africa have cautioned the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the US entity administering foreign aid, against the pro-choice agenda that is likely to be among key priorities of its new leadership. The African Church leaders cautioned following US President-elect, Joe Biden’s announcement on January 13, of his nomination of Samantha Jane Power, a renowned diplomat and award-winning journalist as the next administrator of USAID, an entity responsible for various development programmes around the world including Africa. Samantha Power is supportive of pro-choice agenda, with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights being included among her previous “achievements.” According to Church leaders in Africa who spoke on the issue, Samantha Power’s stint at the helm of USAID will most probably lead to a cultural, ideological and Christian onslaught on the world’s second largest continent through the fostering of agenda that goes against the African culture, such as abortion and homosexuality.
For Most. Rev. (Dr.) Emmanuel Badejo, Bishop of Oyo Diocese, Samantha’s nomination to USAID already complicates a bad situation considering the fact that the U.S. President-elect, despite being a Catholic, is said to be “the most radically-pro-abortion, pro LGBT President in American history.” Under Biden’s Presidency, Bishop Badejo said; “It is almost certain that the Church will suffer attacks for her opposing views to these odd policies. People should at least know the truth.” “It is no surprise that he (Biden) has put Samantha Jane Power in charge of USAID. Under her, USAID will doubtlessly pursue an ideological and cultural onslaught against African religious and cultural values.” To counter the impact of Samantha’s pro-choice agenda in Africa, Bishop Badejo said: “Faith needs to be strengthened to survive the conflict, which will ensue when belief comes face to face with exigency. “More than ever, Catholics in particular and Africans in general need awareness and education so as to know what is really going on about the right to life and the gender ideological war.
“We need focused education, we need appropriate catechesis, we need prophetic and truthful denunciation of the poison that will be offered to Africa as aids and development. African governments need to be persuaded to courageously refuse some of the harmful aids offer that will surely be tossed at needy countries.” Beyond education and catechesis, Bishop Badejo who is at the helm of the Pan-African Episcopal Committee for Social Communication (CEPACS) underscores the need to “pray, organize, communicate, and cooperate.” “More than ever before, agents and structures of evangelization must be deployed to limit the damage to the sanctity of human life that seems already imminent in this appointment. God help us!” For National Director of the Pontifical Missionary Societies (PMS) in Kenya, Fr. Bonaventure Luchidio, though Samantha’s nomination to the development agency and her subsequent elevation to the US National Security Council is a “big boost to the funding agency of needy countries,” he is wary that humanitarian aid to needy continents like Africa could have immoral strings attached.
He said: “Though we need the funds for development support and humanitarian aid, it may sound unethical and immoral to attach strings that cut through the moral fabric and conscience of people to a development and humanitarian aid.” As the award-winning journalist-cum-diplomat prepares to take office, Fr. Luchidio’s prayer is that she “will not persuade and influence other people’s conscience and mind by proposing a pro-choice agenda towards aid to needy countries” as this “will be unethical and immoral at the same time.” “May human dignity and preferential options to the poor be the guiding principles and concerns that take precedence in all aid given to needy countries without attaching aid to some practices that impair our conscience,” the Cleric implored. Fr. Luchidio’s also appealed: “Let the people feel God’s presence through the help they receive not for people to make their choices of good and bad.”
The separation of the humanitarian need from choices “will be good as an option for all to participate in the needy areas supported by USAID especially in the health sectors of HIV/AIDS awareness programmes, procurement of vaccination medicines, job creation through NGO support and hypertensive and pressure related diseases not forgetting the eradication of tropical diseases,” Fr. Luchidio says. As Samantha Power prepares to take office, the Kenya’s PMS National Director says the prayer of the Church in Africa is that “there be a true and real separation of ideologies between supporting needy countries with development and humanitarian aid as a unit in itself of ethical importance of sharing is caring concern; without any attached agenda or proposition of pro-choice agenda as a separate entity.” Fr. Luchidio’s concern regarding the strings attached-humanitarian support by USAID is shared by the General Secretary of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria, Fr. Zacharia Samjumi who decried the unfair distribution of aid among entities depending on where their respective allegiances lie on the pro-choice agenda. “Organizations which promote traditional values and pristine ethos are denied financial support for their culture-sensitive programmes while those focusing on aberrant lifestyles, contraception and abortion receive handsome funding”, Fr. Samjumi said.
The Cleric bemoaned what he terms as the “more brazen political subterfuge” orchestrated by agencies such as USAID on administrations that “dare oppose their coercion and inducement.” Fr. Samjumi offered an example of Nigeria’s immediate former President, Goodluck Jonathan who “was literally snubbed by the Obama administration for signing the anti-gay marriage law despite concerted efforts by foreign forces for him to do otherwise. He lost the war against Islamic insurgency and lost his re-election bid as reward.” “The abomination industry’s warfare across Africa is firm, decisive and ferocious, both at the ideological and programmatic levels. On the ideological sphere, educational curricula are being modified and legal landmines laid surreptitiously through euphemistic phrasing of laws so that the unsuspecting public are unaware of the snares lurking within”, he said. Regarding the programmatic sphere, Fr. Samjumi explained: “Socialization and entertainment programmes are being remodeled to advance the covert objectives of the anti-life cultural imperialists including, but not limited to confusing the impressionable minds of young school children about their own sexuality.” The ideals being propagated by Western civilization through foreign aid agencies such as USAID have left many Catholics across Africa “living in a state of mental and social turbulence.”
“The confusion that this breeds can be mind-boggling”, he noted. How are we now expected to accept that killing of babies in the womb is a better option compared to bearing and nurturing them as persons created in the image and likeness of God?” he posed Making reference to the appointment of Samantha Power to USAID, the Secretary General of the Catholic Bishops of the Central African Republic (CAR), Fr. Joseph Tanga-Koti said that the actions propagated by her pro-choice worldview such as abortion are part of a plan to reduce the population of Africa. Noting that some foreign agencies really aim to promote abortion, Fr. Joseph decried the dire consequences that such actions have on women such as death, difficulty to have children, easy sex, prostitution and confusion about human dignity. “Pro Abortion and Pro Gay people and institutions must keep in mind that there is no name for abortion and homosexuality in African languages.
The main reason for that is the absence of such realities in African cultures”, said Sr. Paule Valérie Mendogo of the Congregation of the Sister Servants of Mary (Ssmd), Cameroon’s Doula Archdiocese. She noted that some agenda that fall in Samantha Power’s pro-choice worldview such as abortion “darkens the joy for procreation strongly inscribed in African culture and tradition, before being reinforced by the teaching of the Church.” Observing that the opinion of pro-abortion and pro-gay people is neither a theological milieu, nor a source for revelation, the Rev. Sister said the wish of the faithful in Africa is to see the end of manipulation organized for ages by lobbies and the mass media, which promote and seek means to force Africans to embark on a radically anti-Christian revolution. With a pro-choice agenda advocate at the helm of USAID, Bishop John Oballa Owaa of Kenya’s Ngong Diocese said it is time for the people of God in Africa and all those who care for religious moral values to be the compass for human society. Africans, Bishop Oballa said, are to be on the alert to recognize and address direct and subtle strategies in publications and discussions on family issues.
“There is need to be keen on recognizing any form of promotion of abortionist mentality, homosexual behaviour and sexualization of children,” Bishop Oballa who heads the Catholic Justice and Peace Commission (CJPC) of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) said. Addressing advocates of religious moral values, Bishop Oballa said: “Be ready to be called names, such as being discriminatory, intolerant, insensitive and fanning hatred when flagging out unhealthy human behaviour and the tendency to hide under protection of generic human rights. “The attacks from pro-choice activists notwithstanding, advocates of pro-life are inspired by deep love of God and the growth of the human family.” Making reference to the Book of Proverbs, the Bishop further said: “Better a dry crust with peace than a house full of feasting with strife.”