“Africa Today Is Crucified”

In uttering “a loud cry” (Mark 15:37; Luke 23:46), Jesus on the cross actualized the cry of the poor and the wretched (Pss. 34:7, 69, 70, 72, 77). In his passion he took upon himself the oppression and the injustice borne by the Black Continent. In modern societies where the fact of being an African is a great challenge, tied as it is to a tragic and shameful history, we find here “a memory of the suffering” of the African. The slaughtered Lamb “recapitulates” the history of suffering in Africa, where the powers of death have been active for many centuries … In a sense, Jesus the Crucified is the African humiliated and oppressed for centuries. (Jean-Marc Ela, Cameroonian theologian quoted in Jesus of Africa, p.196)

The Global Church

Here is a phenomenal article on the global church. The author, a black, female Pentecostal, speaks on her experience lecturing to white Anglicans at Oxford. She posits that we are quickly reaching a period in the history of the Church where we must recognize our deep need for each other. She provides this insight:

I believe we need African Christians to teach us how to preach the gospel in power. The West is overwhelmed with information for information’s sake and wary of truth that is rational yet impotent. The next major evangelist may well emerge from Africa or Latin America or China or Singapore.

We will need them, and simply saying that we will need them is a big step for many of us. The culture of America, of American Christianity both white and black, has been one of self-sufficiency and independence. But what God may be doing in this dramatic, perilous kairos moment is calling us to something different—a culture of interdependency, where we depend on one another across racial, ethnic, and national boundaries.

It is not easy to risk the vulnerability and uncertainty that such a time requires. We have to proceed on something stronger than idealism or optimism, taking a leap of faith that God is indeed at work in the global church, drawn from every tribe and language and nation, and has something for us in the unfamiliar faces of our brothers and sisters.