Article

Africa

Dirk J. Smit

in The Oxford Handbook of Ecumenical Studies

ISBN: 9780199600847
Published online June 2019 | e-ISBN: 9780191756597 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199600847.013.37
Africa

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Since the birth of the ecumenical movement in Edinburgh a century ago, much has changed ecumenically regarding the African continent. This chapter briefly tells the story of official ecumenism on African soil, including the history of the ecumenical movement and the presence of international confessional bodies and traditions. It then describes some of the complex stories of regional, national, and local ecumenism in Africa, including the history of the All Africa Conference of Churches and of the Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians. Drawing on these stories, the chapter then lists five of the most important ecumenical challenges facing the continent—cultural, political, economic, peacemaking, and survival—which often give rise to informal ecumenism. It concludes with an overview of several well-known ecumenical initiatives and documents in Africa.

Keywords: ecumenism; Africa; official; informal; challenges; All Africa Conference of Churches; Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians

Article.  4007 words. 

Subjects: Christianity ; Religion ; Comparative Religion

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