Because the earthquake in Haiti has hogged the limelight in terms of horrible things going on in the world, not much has been said about the Christian-Muslim battles in Jos, Nigeria. The state police commissioner said it began when Muslim youths set a Christian church afire but Muslims are denying they’re at fault. We ran one account of it here.
Things got worse on Sunday, when Anglican Bishop Peter Imasuen of Benin City in Edo state in southern Nigeria was kidnapped from his home shortly after returning from church. Fellow Anglican Bishop Ben Kwashi of Jos is blaming the Muslims, telling the London Times that, “At the heart of this, they want to overrun this part of the world and make it Islamic.” He was released Wednesday but no one is revealing whether or not a ransom was paid.
Meanwhile, Bishop Kwashi is demanding that local Muslims in Jos return the bodies of Christians that were mistakenly placed in mosques. Read about that here.
I am sorry to be so late in filing something about this, as my attention has been elsewhere but one reason I’m mentioning this now is that the Anglican archbishop of all Nigeria, Peter Akinola, will be in town in less than two weeks. The Convocation of Anglicans in North America is having a Communion service and reception in his honor 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 10 at Truro Church in Fairfax with one of his proteges, Bishop Martyn Minns, preaching. There will be a reception afterwards. Archbishop Akinola steps down from his position in March. Other churches and overseas guests will be present, so this is evidently quite a large reception.
I am guessing Archbishop Akinola might have something to say about what’s going on in Nigeria, if not at Truro, maybe at an earlier reception that day at the Metropolitan Club downtown. They’re letting one Episcopal media person into this event but not other reporters (I’ve already asked), so unfortunately the archbishop hasn’t changed when it comes to transparency. I wrote about his dislike of the press here on this very blog two years ago. One asks: What is Archbishop Akinola going to say at the Metropolitan Club that he doesn’t want media folks to hear?
— Julia Duin, religion editor