Australia is a large continent with a small population. Congregations of the major historical denominations in Australia are diminishing and ageing. We forget what happens elsewhere.
At St Paul's at Bakery Hill in Ballarat, our parish priest is Nigerian and we love him. He has married this year, and, while we have met and love Faith, we are waiting for her, as she wends her way through Australia's immigration procedures, to come and settle. The people of Ballarat, as they meet Constantine Osuchukwu and get to know him, think well of him. We are sure this will be the case when Faith comes to her new home. Please pray for a speedy resolution to the immigration matters so that Faith can settle among us.
At St Paul's, we also have African members of the congregation. At the moment, Botswana, Kenya, South Sudan and South Africa are represented.
As we engage in conversation, and as we read in international Anglican news, we learn how very different are matters Anglican in Africa. For a long time, the power of the Anglican Communion has lain with its Anglo origins and the former British Empire, now the Commonwealth of Nations. Things have changed as the Anglo countries find their congregations diminishing and the former colonies of Empire in Africa have found their congregations growing. This is a massive shift for the Anglican Communion to consider. How long will it be until there is an African Archbishop of Canterbury?
Mission Theologian in the Anglican Communion lecture explores African Christianity
Posted on: October 26, 2015 12:06 PM
The Canon Professor Joseph Galgalowith Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby at Lambeth Palace
[ACNS] Christianity in Africa has benefited from sustained exponential growth, with numbers growing from about 10 million in 1900 to just over half a billion in 2015; but the diversity of the different forms of Christian practices and teachings on the continent means that it may be more accurate to see it as Christianities rather than Christianity – that was the message from Canon Professor Joseph Galgalo as he delivered the inaugural Mission Theology Seminar at Lambeth Palace last week.
The lecture by Prof Galgalo, vice-chancellor of St Paul’s University in Limuru, Kenya, was the first in a new series of seminars organised by the Mission Theology in the Anglican Communion project.
“There is no denying that African Christianity is increasingly vibrant and as the populations of the countries keep growing, the churches proportionately take their fair share of this growth,” Prof Galgalo said. “The growth is not limited to any particular denomination and increase in numbers often results into variety of Churches. To cite the example of Kenya, during the 2009 national census, 31,877,734 (82.98 per cent) out of the national population of 38,412,088 identified themselves as Christian (of Catholic, Protestant or other denominations). This translates to about nine points percentage increase compared to the result of the 1999 census.To read more, please go here.