Women in African Christianities

Authored by: Esther Mombo

The Routledge Companion to Christianity in Africa

Print publication date:  December  2015
Online publication date:  December  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415705028
eBook ISBN: 9781315890012
Adobe ISBN: 9781134505777

10.4324/9781315890012.ch10

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Abstract

To write or talk about women in African Christianities is to bring to light the church in Africa, because they are the church. The significance of women in the African church has begun to receive attention, especially with women naming themselves and telling their stories. From this, one discovers that they were the first converts and missionary Christianity noted their significance. It has taken time, but today the literature on women in African Christianity is growing, even though African women have been part of the church from the beginning. In writing a paper on women in African Christianities, one faces the possibility of running into the danger of generalizing the diverse African communities’ cultures and denominations. Africa is the second largest continent on earth and the reality of Africa and African goes far beyond the continent and the people who live there. There are ethnic, linguistic and cultural diversity among Africans, even within the same country. There are different understandings of spiritualities, differing politics and economic systems. Considering these realities, in this paper I use the idea and social reality of women in African Christianities as an overarching context and in some sections refer to specific groups, denominational traditions and organisations such as the Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians.

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