The Traditional Religions of Asia and Africa

A_Swazi_medicine_man_or_shaman_performing_a_ritual_in_front_Wellcome_V0015944
Author: Wellcome Library, London [CC BY 4.0]
I’ve not yet visited Africa, but I have researched a good bit into African Traditional Religion (ATR). My favorite class in seminary was Christianity in 3rd World Africa taught by South African professor Dr. Adrio König. It was fascinating. I have also benefitted greatly by reading up on the ministry of William Wadé Harris.

When I came to Asia to minister to some of the animistic people groups with their own traditional religions, I saw many similarities with the ATRs: shamanistic rituals and sacrifices, ancestor veneration, spirit trees, fear of the spirits at night, and looking for spiritual answers to the preeminent concrete concerns of health and blessing. The cultures of traditional animistic religions of Africa and Asia are largely power-fear focused yet they also relate to people with an honor-shame perspective.

I encourage workers in Asia to learn more about ATR and how Christianity has developed in that African context.

So today I link to an instructive article on ministering to followers of ATR. Randy and Kathy Arnett who were IMB missionaries in Africa. They lost their lives last week in a car accident in Africa.

“How to Make Disciples among Followers of African Traditional Religion” by Randy and Kathy Arnett

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