Theology and development in Africa

Authored by: Stan Chu Ilo , Idara Otu

The Routledge Handbook of African Theology

Print publication date:  June  2020
Online publication date:  May  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138092303
eBook ISBN: 9781315107561
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter will discuss theology and development in Africa from historical and thematic perspectives. We shall undertake this task through a review of significant voices and themes in African studies on theology and development. We shall pay particular attention to how the narratives and praxis of being and belonging in Africa are accounted for in Christian churches and by African theological voices in the search for how to meet present and complex social conditions in Africa’s march toward the future. The Christian faith in the African continent has assumed a triadic movement—as a search for wealth, health, and hope—in its present emergence as a central driver of social change in Africa. It is in this eschatological thrust that salvation and abundant life are being interpreted through multiple contending, conflicting, and complementary narratives about the movement of history in Africa and the place of faith in African Christianity. There are contrasting models of morality, social ethics, and spirituality regarding how individuals, communities, faith traditions, and nations in Africa are engaging the human and material resources and other social capitals in the context of socio-economic life.

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