New Wine in an Old Wine Bottle?: Charismatic Healing in the Mainline Churches in Ghana

Cephas N. Omenyo

in Global Pentecostal and Charismatic Healing

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780195393408
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199894390 | DOI:
New Wine in an Old Wine Bottle?: Charismatic Healing in the Mainline Churches in Ghana

Show Summary Details


This chapter traces how Charismatic healing practices long prominent in African Independent Churches/African Instituted Churches and Pentecostal churches have become central in all the traditionally mainline/historic churches in Ghana, focusing on Akan ethnic churches: Roman Catholic Church in Ghana, Presbyterian Church of Ghana, and Methodist Church Ghana. Non-pentecostal Western missionaries established mainline churches in the early nineteenth century. To stem the exodus of members to AICs and Pentecostals, from the 1970s lay-led Charismatic renewal movements within mainline churches departed from missionary heritages influenced by an Enlightenment worldview developed in non-African cultures. For most Akan/African Christians, as for practitioners of African indigenous religions, religion must meet existential needs. The universe seems filled with benevolent and malevolent spirits; the Devil and demons cause sickness or render medicine impotent; and salvation includes healing and deliverance or liberation. When sick, Akans typically try hospitals, traditional healers, Muslim spiritualists, and churches until one finds healing.

Keywords: Ghana; Akan; African Independent Churches; African Instituted Churches; mainline; missionaries; Charismatic renewal movements; salvation; African indigenous religions; Muslim spiritualists

Chapter.  7977 words. 

Subjects: East Asian Religions

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.