The Role of Churches in Ending Anti-Sodomy Laws

We once again celebrated Pride month and many LGBTQI people and their allies in the global north revelled in the hard-won advances for the recognition of human rights for our communities.

But 73 countries across the world still criminalize private same-gender intimacy between consenting adults, with 11 imposing the death penalty. These so-called anti-sodomy laws got their name from a misinterpretation of the biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah, and the majority of the statutes were imposed during the period of British colonization.

Originally, sodomy was considered a crime against only the church (not the state) and was therefore tried in ecclesiastical courts. Read more.