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-Africa: A New Center of Christianity?

by Dr. D ~ January 4th, 2016

200px-Africa_(orthographic_projection).svg

                          (Image: Wikipedia)

This is really not news to those of us who have been following the spread of Christianity around the world in the 21st century and Christian missions in particular. Africa is quickly becoming a new center of Christianity with over 469 million believers accounting for nearly half of the population. Not only that, but church attendance figures are among the best of any Christian population. All of this in spite of the fact that North Africa is dominated by Islam.

Here is an interesting article from The Economist of all places calling attention to astounding rise of Christianity in African continent:

Sub-Saharan Africa is not only home to the world’s most observant Christians; it is also the fastest-growing region on the planet by population. And its entrenched poverty means that even if it enjoys decades of rapid economic development, it is unlikely to reach the levels of wealth that tend to correspond to increased secularisation. As Christians celebrate the birth of Christ, the centre of gravity of the world’s most popular religion is shifting towards the birthplace of humanity itself.

<Read the whole article>

Response: Those of us in America and the West have been observing a decline in Christian influence, but this is not the case around the world. Years ago we wrote about the shifting center of Christianity in light of the missions in Africa and Asia and linked to a Christianity Today article.

It is obvious that Africa will soon become a new center of Christian activity in the 21st century. Already some African churches are sending missionaries to Europe and even the USA.  New Christian colleges, universities, and seminaries are being founded every year on the continent and soon it will also become a new center for Christian thought and theology sometime in this generation.

African Christian institutions could conceivably replace those in America and Europe which have become so secularized that they have forgotten their former Christian roots and even may oppose a Christian world view. Remember that Harvard, Yale, Princeton and many other major universities were originally founded as ‘Christian’ seminaries to train new ministers and church leaders.

Will Africa become the new major center of Christianity in 50 years or so? Time will tell. Asia also offers a promising future for Christianity. China is now estimated to have over 150 million Christians while in South Korea the Christian population is closing in on 50%. I also personally know of one Christian mission group in India which is experiencing an exponential growth rate that could change the face of that country in 20 years or so.

We do live in interesting times when more people are converting to Christianity around the world than in any other time. But with it there is also more Christians subjected to persecution and death than any other time since the 1st century with the Boko Haram also in Africa leading the way.            *Top

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1 Response to -Africa: A New Center of Christianity?

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