I can see value in both sides. Third World Liberation Theologies: A Reader. While the churches were essentially quiescent, it is important to recognize that there were a few outspoken white Christians who ac­ Abstract. Black Liberation Theology, in its Founder's Words The Rev. Her academic training was in the field of pastoral theology and care and religion and psychology. There, several African theologians outlined ideas for a theology of liberation in Africa. Black Christianity is fundamentally grounded in a liberation theology that is unique to the African-American experience during forced immigration from Africa, migration around the colonies through the slave trade, and while living their lives as human property. As Liberation Theologies in the United States demonstrates, this critical use of religion has often taken the form of liberation theologies, which use primarily Christian principles to address questions of social justice, including racism, poverty, and other types of oppression. It is still accused of being thinly disguised communism, as evidenced by the words of the book of Acts cited above. This new theology in the African American church and the Latin American Roman Catholic Church had deep roots in Marxism. (These days, I write in my journal, or I write an essay. Read African Liberation Theology: Intergenerational Conversations on Eritreas Futures book reviews & author details … South African theologian Allan Boesak argued that black consciousness was an early, secular form of liberation theology that set the path for the Church to emphasize that not only are blacks human but they are also children of God (Boesak, qtd. Even more radical than Sr. Janice’s involvement, this commitment led some priests and nuns to join guerrilla movements and kill in the name of justice. It contextualizes Christianity in an attempt to help those of African descent overcome oppression. Article Metrics. Although she was right about that at the time (though now I am just a feminist, with no other adjectives attached), I failed to see this particular sentiment as women’s lib. I suppose if I were an Orthodox Christian, I would recognize that as a vision of my relationship with God, and I would point out that I am the one at fault, and that maybe things didn’t need to be so difficult, that he/she was trying to love me and I wouldn’t let him/her. Black theology, or black liberation theology, refers to a theological perspective which originated among African-American seminarians and scholars, and in some black churches in the United States and later in other parts of the world. In the wake of the seeming witch-hunt into the internal affairs of church groups in South Africa, it would only be fair to re-examine the role of theology in the context of the national liberation struggle waged by the people and its continuing service in a constitutional democracy charged with concerns of the millenials to decolonise and transform the country. I felt the need to be free and for me, that meant leaving organized religion. Twenty- Third Publications: Mystic, Connecticut, 1995. Liberation theology, religious movement arising in late 20th-century Roman Catholicism and centred in Latin America. Reinventing Christianity: African Theology Today. Since then, it claims to have broadened its perspective to include oppression on the grounds of race, gender and class. The essay seeks to chart the developments of African theology and African liberation theology within the African continent. SEK 220. The PAC position on the practical relations with religious formations as stated in its founding aims and objectives, and in the adopted slogan that “Africa is for Africans, Africans are for humanity, and Humanity is for God”, has been less understood, and at times violently opposed by its misguided younger generations. The PAC’s third objective is to establish and maintain an Africanist Socialist Democracy, recognising the primacy of material and spiritual interests of the African people. In the Americas and Africa, in Europe and the Far East, liberation theology still inspires Christians of all denominations to fight entrenched political forces that prevent freedom for all. Ferm, Deane William. The list of conference participants who presented their exposition of a theology of liberation in the struggle to decolonise and transform the African continent included Kofi Appiah-Kubi, Ngindu Mushete, Jose Chipenda, John Mbiti, Gabriel Setiloane, James Cone, Constance Baratang Thetele, Sabelo Ntwasa, Allan Boesak, Rose Zoe-Obianga, Desmond Tutu, Sergio Torres, among many others. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. African American scholars began to reread the Bible in light of the themes of liberation and justice. It seemed more like common sense and courtesy towards another human being to me: he had two arms, two hands, and perfectly good vision; he could pour his own cereal. From Reasonsing from the Scriptures Ministries. Feminist theology in Africa, he says, “has not been as strident as in some parts of the Western world, and it would probably be right to characterize it…as concerned with women’s role in the wholeness of a single humanity rather than in feminism as a revolutionary countermovement” (51). My beating, beating, beating against them with fists was a normal reaction; there was no way they could atone for what they had done. I don’t know how to explain these things now, now in my agnostic who-the-hell-knows-who-God-is days, but I had a vision. This chapter introduces Catholic theology in Africa. The PAC position on the freedom of religion and its support for a contextual theology of liberation has been vindicated by a series of failed states worldwide, who suppressed the confessional church movement. The alleged witch-hunt is viewed in certain quarters as the battles for the souls of South African citizens conducted between the South African Council of Churches (SACC) on the one hand, and the new movement of charismatic churches plus nondescript cults on the other. Two major strands of theology have developed in Africa - inculturation and liberation - each in response to different needs. This chapter introduces Catholic theology in Africa. Her statement referenced the now famous method of killing suspected “collaborators” in South African townships, a method known as “necklacing.” Perpetrators would place a tire around a suspect’s neck, douse him with gasoline, and light him on fire. Is there something wrong with the concept of liberation that needs to be corrected in order to avoid the power grabbing that occurs later? WACHEGE “AFRICAN INCULTURATION LIBERATION THEOLOGY”, IN L. Theologians who have observed the course of liberation theology in Latin America have noticed a similar theme; according to one scholar, liberation theologians “are no longer offering the easy justifications of the necessity of ‘counterviolence’ against the ‘institutionalized violence’ of the political establishment,” largely because of “the bloodshed associated with the movement in recent years” (Rhodes). A Black Theology of liberation must draw its cultural hermeneutics of struggle from a critical reappropriation of black cul­ ture just as an African Theology must arm itself with the political hermeneutics that arise from the contemporarysocial struggles … Historically Southern Africa is renowned for holding the highest number in Africa of Christian converts per square kilometre. The Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Commission (CRL) are a Chapter Nine institution in the constitution of SA which has been laying fallow without much relevance from 1996 until now. It is good that there are those who work from the inside to ensure they become the institutions of justice they are intended to be. I don’t know if we have the stamina, which is why we simply condemn and then create social engineering programs to achieve what we hope will be the desired outcome. As exemplary interrogative text, Negash and Weldemichael’s book employs brilliant maieutic strategies that undergird the need for “intergenerational conversations on Eritrea’s futures.” Liberation theology started because poor people of South Africa were being subjected to harsh treatments by those of higher authority, because the poor were oppressed they decided that it was finally time for them stand up for themselves and voice their opinion for themselves. It stressed both heightened awareness of the “sinful” socioeconomic structures that caused social inequities and active participation in changing those structures. They argued that there was another way of knowing the truth – a dialectical one, wherein the world is not a static object of mass that the human mind tries to learn to understand, but that it was where knowledge of the truth is an involvement and immersion of self in the process of transformation and reconstruction of a new world. During this period Christianity flourished and produced some of the major theologians of the patristic period, and then survived with difficulty after the rise of Islam. Why did he need to be served? Liberation Theology has a much longer history, and is rooted in scripture that states that Christ has come “to preach good news to the poor…proclaim freedom for the prisoners…release the oppressed…proclaim the year of Jubilee” (release from debts) from Luke 4 v 18-19. Bogus pastors acting like fake biblical prophets tend to hypnotise unaware congregants, making them eat green grass, snakes and rats as a path to salvation. The same year Sr. Janice found herself staring at the gray walls of a prison cell in Salisbury, Rhodesia, a group of African theologians met in Accra for a Pan-African Conference of Third-World Theologians. This falsehood gravitated into the practice of Herrenvolk beliefs and white supremacy. been that there is a place for liberation theologies after political liberation, as is the case in South Africa. Black liberation theology originated on July 31, 1966, when 51 black pastors bought a full page ad in the New York Times and demanded a more aggressive approach to … The first of these runs from the beginning of Christianity to ad 1500. It sought to apply religious faith by aiding the poor and oppressed through involvement in political and civic affairs. Emancipation in African Theology: An Inquiry on the Relevance of Latin American Liberation Theology to Africa: 14: Wan-Tatah, Victor: Amazon.sg: Books Yet, feminism is a part of liberation theology, and a part of liberation theology in Africa, and though I cannot participate in it, I am glad to see the church trying to respond. Liberation Theology and the Marxism Leninism Worldview (Part 12 of 15). Sr. Janice’s involvement with guerilla-style liberation movements highlights some important historical trends in the 1970s, as around the world nuns and priests committed themselves to the idea that Christianity meant not only spiritual liberation—or liberation from sin and suffering after death—but also physical liberation here on earth for people who were suffering from poverty or discrimination or unjust regimes. The church occasionally finds itself used for wrong reasons by dubious forces, to the detriment of the common good of the African people. Still, now that we have examples of stable countries where people have a voice, are we willing to let a country like Zimbabwe go through years of bloodshed in order to achieve it? Lund, Sweden: Lund University Press, 1988. x + 283 pp. Liberation theologies existed long before they became academic disciplines in the both the Latin American and African American contexts. Apartheid policies were formulated by trained theologians. In Latin America, priests and nuns had started defying local and national authorities in order to liberate the oppressed—in this case, the poor who were under exploitive capitalist economic systems. A couple of years ago, I met Sister Janice McLaughlin, a Maryknoll nun on leave from Zimbabwe, where she has lived and worked off and on since 1977. I sat in my chair after the speaker had finished, and I let everyone leave, and then I started to weep. Land mine kills 6 in South Africa by Sheila Rule (New York Times), 16 December 1985; Statement by Oliver Tambo on behalf of Liberation Movements, at the International Conference of experts for the support of victims of Colonialism and Apartheid in Southern Africa Mobilise world support for African Liberation struggle, 09 April 1973, OSLO There, several African theologians outlined ideas for a theology of liberation in Africa. African theology—Black or African—needed to shift emphasis from the Exodus motif of liberation to a theology of reconstruction. In the last couple of years, those of us in the Western world have been treated to hours of rhetoric outlining a strategy of violence in order to achieve safety and democracy and to protect freedom. But no, I do not see it that way. Instead, today, I find solace in William James’s rather broad definition of religion: “Religion, whatever it is, is [wo]man’s total reaction upon life…” (James, 45) [brackets mine]. Winnie Mandela shocked the world in 1986 when she stated that Africans should liberate themselves using tires and matches. These young people are known in media circles as the millennial generation. In South Africa, it is a critique of power; in the UK it is a political theology of black culture. The CRL Commission conducts its investigations behind closed doors, creating room for sensation-seekers in the tabloids to have a field day. Many years ago, when I was ensconced in the evangelical Christian world, I spent a few months in Australia listening to rather rabid lay theologians suggest how we should view the world. The Emergence of Liberation Theology in Latin America and Africa Liberation theology originated in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s in South Africa. Black Theology’s Liberation Agenda The Black Theology of South Africa and the Black Theology of North America have one common foundational focus, that is, the liberation from racism (Hopkins 1990:1- 2). The earliest form, emerging alongside missionary and colonial incursions into Africa has been termed inculturation liberation theology, or simply African theology. This is what produced Black Theology, a theology of liberation in the African setting, in response to the particular circumstances of southern Africa. “Christian Revolution in Latin America: The Changing Face of Liberation Theology.” Part One. African liberation theology arose from a desire to express the Christian faith from an African perspective, breaking free from western theological and political hegemony. Eerdmans & African World Press: Grand Rapids ,Michigan & Trenton, New Jersey, 1995. Yet if that’s true—if African culture is essentially liberating—what has happened to African liberators like Mugabe, who turned into oppressors? The 1970s were the decade for liberation theology. The encounter between Africa and Christianity is divided into three periods. The continued use of violence in Zimbabwe mimics the continued violence in other colonized countries that are now independent. Echoing this, Sr. Janice recently backpedaled away from her commitment to violence as a method of liberation. She nodded her head and one of the other women laughed and said in an apologetic tone, “Jessica is sort of the Christian version of women’s lib.”. In 1977, Sr. Janice became (in)famous when the Rhodesian government arrested her as a terrorist and Communist after they realized she was publishing a book, The Propaganda War, which exposed the government’s methods for discrediting the “liberation soldiers.” Sr. Janice’s detention without bail caused an enormous international stir; under U.N. pressure, the government tried and deported her. Copyright © All rights reserved. For me, as a woman, asserting my identity as an equal meant—no, not becoming a pastor, though I considered it but rather, like Biko, refusing to participate in a community where I felt stifled and stymied and unequal. D in Theology and Religious Studies from the University of Denver and Iliff School of Theology. Their view on the written account of salvation in the bible was that of the many interventions of God in favour of the poor and the oppressed. Subsequently, this new theological movement influenced the World Council of Churches (WCC) to launch a dedicated Programme Against Racism and mobilised the international community to support the just war concept in Southern Africa. He would wish to be Liberation theology captured the hopes and the longings of poor people, especially in Latin America in the 1960s and 1970s. The 1970s were the decade for liberation theology. The dominant form of Black Theology has been in the USA, originally influenced by Black Power and the critique of white racism. This is the stuff of cults. The encounter between Africa and Christianity is divided into three periods. Haiti and South Africa are also home to forms of liberation theology. They are no different from the pie-in-the-sky-when-you-die preaching of western missionaries resplendent in African history, who sought to tame the captured souls of the colonised and enjoin them as passive subjects in their own oppression. In his view, what Africa needed most was a theological articulation that took into consideration the need for reconstruction in line with the New World Order. The opposite was true for me. This chapter maintains that African theology emerged not only as a theological reaction to the dominant Western interpretation of the gospel in Africa, but also as a theological attempt to secure the African cultural identity by reaffirming the African past. TB Joshua and other leading faith leaders are listed among the rich and high net worth of Nigeria. In point of fact, sceptics of the investigations into the commercialisation of religion – as conducted by the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities – ironically refer to its publicised activities as a witch-hunt. Similarly, the Abahlali baseMjondolo, which is a movement of shack dwellers in South Africa, was also inspired by liberation theology. Liberation Theology And The Church in Africa, Queen Ranavalona I: The Intensely Cruel Monarch of Madagascar, Menelik II: Solomon’s Regal Heir and King of Ethiopia, Land Seizure, Land Reform and Land Grab in Africa, Cattle, Power, and Gender in Sub-Saharan Africa, Sundiata: A Slightly Irreverent Version of Mali’s Last Conqueror, Christianity vs. Islam in Africa: A 19th Century Debate. Although liberation theology has been known world-wide as a Latin American concept, there was a development emanating from Africa, beginning in the 1970s. African Christian thought in the post-missionary era: liberation and integration It has become well known that two distinct trends have emerged in African Christian thought in the post-independent and post-missionary era, from the late 1950s to the late 1980s. Others, like Mercy Oduyoye, attempt to transform the structures and institutions that have participated in both the liberation and enslaving process. Chapter 2 provides a historical sketch of origins and development of African theology and diverse types of African theology. The theologians made a vow of liberation, and in word and action joined the struggle for national independence, basic freedoms, democracy and a human rights culture. A Theology of Liberation: the African Context A paper by Ndongolera C. Mwangupili Introduction Liberation Theology is considered to be a theology that developed in Latin America in the late 1960s with Gustavo Gutierrez as its father. Liberation theology is a cry for justice. During this period Christianity flourished and produced some of the major theologians of the patristic period, and then survived with difficulty after the rise of Islam. “I’m not a total pacifist but I’m leaning towards it. This new epistemological approach revealed the Christian truth to mean the struggle to overcome the fear of freedom by confronting and embracing it. Charlatans and opportunists in their various hues of politics, religion, arts and culture, entertainment and whatever formation that is in proximity to young people, aim to catch the heart and souls of the under thirty generation born shortly before 1994 and after statutory apartheid was abolished. I could not answer that in the church—I had to leave. Two major strands of theology have developed in Africa--inculturation and liberation--each in response to different needs. The other has been the theological exploration into the indigenous cultures of African peoples, with particular stress on their pre-Christian (and also pre-Islamic) religious traditions. In the Americas and Africa, in Europe and the Far East, liberation theology still inspires Christians of all denominations to fight entrenched political forces that prevent freedom for all. The Varieties of Religious Experience: A Study in Human Nature. I am aware that many people find freedom and joy there—liberation is one of the fundamental concepts of any religion. The Religions special issue, “Transforming Encounters and Critical Reflection: African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology in Dialogue,” addresses the concern over the present postcolonial context in which African persons and societies find themselves. Unfortunately, liberation theology has often been one-sided. Introduction. These, too, are acts of faith and of prayer, but they are not necessarily recognized by formal religion.) Liberation theologies existed long before they became academic disciplines in the both the Latin American and African American contexts. Liberation theology was a radical movement that grew up in South America as a response to the poverty and the ill-treatment of ordinary people. To my mind, liberation theology's essential concern is about the harnessing of religious faith and commitment for the transfer of power to the powerless, to ensure justice for all and to remove all human impediments to Allah's Grace reaching all of Allah's people. - Volume 61 Issue 2 - Jonathan N. Gerstner Download in PDF, EPUB, and Mobi Format for read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. Religious institutions are here to stay; they will never be abolished. Liberation theology generally refers to a theology applied to the core concerns of marginalized communities in need of social, political, or economic equality and justice. ), I said something along the lines of, “Do you always pour his cereal for him in the morning?” It seemed to me the height of absurdity and laziness that he stood around, doing nothing, while she did something he could have easily done for himself. Growing up, I felt stifled in the Evangelical Christian community that surrounded me. 299] EVOLUTION OF LIBERATION THEOLOGY 301 were apolitical. Although I am firmly committed to an Africa free of its colonial legacy, and freed from neocolonialism, I also see violence as a trap—and I recognize that use of the word “liberation” has become propagandized. The Jacob Zuma administration is found to be in prayer with strange bedfellows – the National Religious Leaders Council headed by the Reverend Ray McCauley of Rhema Church – who have no known record of taking part in the struggle for a liberation theology. Liberation theology (Spanish: Teología de la liberación, Portuguese: Teologia da libertação) is a synthesis of Christian theology and socio-economic analyses, that emphasizes "social concern for the poor and political liberation for oppressed peoples." Our task as theologians is to create a theology that arises from and is accountable to the African people.”. There is so much to say, all at once. As long as the God of life is engaged against the idols of death, whether these be the idols of neo-liberal capitalism in our government’s macro-economic policy, or the idols of patriarchy within our cultures and religions, or the idols of moral and medical discrimination in the context of HIV and AIDS, there is a … While Latin American liberation theology focused on class oppression, Black Liberation Theology focused on race, or better, melanin. “That’s what the Bible says.”, (As an aside, I don’t know where my hurt came from. I guess he could have chosen a man. In South Africa, Black Theology has been classified as a branch of liberation theology. Forgive me if I tumble over my words and garble the proper order of things. It especially focuses on the injustices committed against African Americans … As liberation, theology in Africa would and should aim at analyzing the social and structural conditions that have generated the situation of injustice, political instability, poverty and other predicaments of post-colonial Africa. I started to hate Christianity that day. The violence and ferocity with which I beat was in direct proportion to my inner turmoil and pain. In the wake of the seeming witch-hunt into the internal affairs of church groups in South Africa, it would only be fair to re-examine the role of theology in the context of the national liberation struggle waged by the people and its continuing service in a constitutional democracy charged with concerns of the millenials to decolonise and transform the country. Church leaders and theological educators as often as not have assumed that African Theology denotes little more than providing traditional Christian theology with an African face,.furnishing Christian truth with contextually­ sensitive illustrations and applications. I think at the very least liberation theology is a reflection on the fact that human liberation has to be part of the Christian understanding of salvation. The advantage of this formulation has been that there is a place for liberation theologies after political liberation, as is the case in South Africa. Introduction. It was a particularly gruesome way to die. While we acknowledge that all expressions of liberation theology are not identical, we must protest very strongly against the false divisions that some make: between black theology in South Africa and black theology in the United States, between black theology and African theology, and between black theology and Latin American liberation theology. Abstract. Amazon.in - Buy African Liberation Theology: Intergenerational Conversations on Eritreas Futures book online at best prices in India on Amazon.in. In Africa, there’s little sense of class struggle inside the church, of positing a “church from below” in opposition to the hierarchy. He stood there while she poured his cereal and poured the milk and gave him the bowl and spoon. Renowned African American theologian, Professor James H. Cone published his books, Black Theology and Black Power in 1969 and A Black Theology of Liberation in 1970, which introduced the Black Theology movement in the United States. Liberation Theology by Lia. I asked directly: “You mean to tell me that even though I know I’m smarter than many men”—including you, I wanted to say, but didn’t—“and I can prove that empirically, I am still inferior to them intellectually?”, “Yes,” he said. Black liberation theology focuses on Africans This is not an uncommon linkage. I think this, I suppose, because I recognize that violence has never really bought or gained freedom, though I can clearly see the virtue of going to war against an evil like the Rwandan government during the 1994 genocide. It came down to roles, expectations that women are in charge of food and men are served. NAMWERA(Ed. The young people have access to information and they are eager to gain knowledge and transform the obstinate beast ‘that left its heart behind’, as poet laureate of African liberation Ingoapele Madingoane has put it. Nevertheless, as real a problem as racism is, Boesak suggested that the economic question is as vitally important in the quest for liberation: “We have to make a proper analysis of the realities of power and powerlessness” (271). The United States supported this coup and a … I was at a religious retreat, in my late teens, observing a married woman serve her husband breakfast. According to church theologian/scholar John Parratt, feminist theology is the “second generation” of liberation theology. Studia Theologica Lundensia 42. 1 P.N. It said said the church should act to bring about social change, and should ally itself with the working class to do so. And I keep saying, ‘Maybe this is kind of the fruits of using violence.’ What I see now happening is how governments, or people in power, can so easily use violence, you know, instill in the youth, ‘This person is the enemy and they should be beaten or killed or tortured or whatever.’ It is a very evil and insidious thing and it is so easy to instill it, particularly in young people, and what that must do to future generations—Zimbabwe is preparing to destroy itself, not just economically and environmentally, but its people. The ruling elites unethically swing like a pendulum from one side to the next without anchoring itself in the moral fibre of the theology of liberation. In the book, Black Theology in the USA and South Africa, Hopkins (1989:x-xii) affirms this connec-