Keep on talking: gay imam engages Africans in pandemic

 | 
12/18/2020

It’s hard to pull up a chair and talk sex or fly imams over closed borders for gender training in a pandemic. But Imam Muhsin Hendricks wasn’t about to let COVID-19 destroy his carefully crafted Islamic training programme – he’d faced down too much else in his 53 years. One of the first imams to come out as gay, Hendricks is a pioneer, known continent-wide for pursuing dialogue with fellow Muslim leaders about a topic many don’t want to discuss. Same-sex relations remain a taboo across much of Africa and in much of the Muslim world. Seeking to smash those taboos, pre-pandemic Hendricks held workshops, hosted talking circles for select imams and comforted Muslims anguished by their sexuality or gender identity. Once the virus struck, he refashioned his programme for the times: virtual workshops for those who could not travel, and safe, socially distant meet-ups for those who could. “It is such a challenge to give hope when people are experiencing loneliness, financial loss and low self-esteem in the time of COVID,” said Hendricks from his mosque in Cape Town. “But we had to pull it off,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation, given the influence these religious leaders could have in their thousands-strong congregations.

Regions: ,

Share this:

Latest Global News

Added on: 06/24/2024
06/23/2024
House Deputy Speaker and Las Piñas Rep. Camille Villar has called for a stop to the continuing discrimination against members of the LGBTQIA+ community. During …
Added on: 06/24/2024
06/23/2024
We always knew Oscar-nominated actress, Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor, was a queen. But it wasn’t until 2022 that we learned Ellis-Taylor was a bisexual queen. Two years …
Added on: 06/24/2024
06/23/2024
The US ambassador in Budapest has accused the government of Hungary’s far-right prime minister, Viktor Orbán, of using a “machinery of fear” to launch …

Explore LGBTQ+ Issues

Other News from ,

Added on: 06/21/2024
WINDHOEK, June 21 (Reuters) – A high court in Namibia declared two colonial-era laws that criminalised same-sex acts between men unconstitutional on Friday, in …
Added on: 06/19/2024
An alleged gay, identified as “Junior”, has been mercilessly beaten for allegedly attempting to have a sexual affair with a young man in Assin …
Added on: 06/18/2024
Barely two weeks after Constant Mutamba took office as Justice Minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo, he ordered public prosecutors to prosecute homosexuals …