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Katharina Hofer

Does a Militant Christianity Develop in Africa?

On the public role of Evangelicalism
in Africa south of the Sahara

German Version


From: Stimmen der Zeit, 2006/3, S.162-175
webmaster's own, not authorized translation


Under the impression of world-wide violent religious conflicts, of a continuous wave of terror attacks the perpetrators of which see themselves as God's warriors, and of the mixture of religious motives with political and military aims in the public information about American foreign and security policy, Huntington's theory of the "Fight of the Cultures" {1} found expression in new theses of a global war of religions. The Africa correspondent of the weekly "Die Zeit" spoke about "new radical churches" spreading wildly out of the ruins of African civil war and calling to the "Christian Dschihad" against their Islamic opponents {2}. Press reports about the spreading of a fundamentalist Christianity in Africa emphasize above all its local destructive effects {3}. Philip Jenkins, professor for history and religion science at the University of Pennsylvania, does in his often reviewed book "The Next Christendom" still a further step: On the background of an increasing conservatism, fundamentalism and violent fanaticism, he warns of a scenario of world-wide religious wars in the style of the European Middle Ages, in which however the protagonists would be armed with nuclear warheads and anthrax. For the twenty-first century he prognosticates the replacement of the (secular) ideologies of the twentieth Century by religion as the moulding power for mass mobilization and devastation {4}.

For some observers the phenomenon of the spreading of an at least rhetorically militant Christianity may promise a relieving qualification of the one-sided association of Islam and violence. But the Huntington scenarios continue. Their neuralgic point is the imagination Islamic and Christian faith warriors could in the economically and politically marginalized countries of the south not only fight against each other, but also against a common enemy in the industrialized north, that exploits and suppresses them in the measure in which he turned away from (true) faith. This is in the long run, something exaggerated formulated, that fear that since Robert Kaplan's "The Coming Anarchy" inspires some scenarios of a global war of cultures {5}. It has, according to Kaplan's own analysis, its root in the repression of an increasing social inequality,



and got by the developments of the last years a new, more threatening face in form of a religious fanaticism that is no longer nationally limited but unfolds within and between social and cultural milieus.

The "new churches", which are labelled as radical, militant or also fundamentalist, belong to the Evangelical movement that is persistently growing in many regions of the global south. In the following the public role of this movement is to be discussed under the criterion of its developing history, its spreading in the context of social, political and economic processes of change since the end of the east west conflict, and its role in interreligious conflicts in Africa south of the Sahara.


North South Migrations

The shifting of the majority hegemony of Christianity from the northern to the southern hemisphere can be impressively reconstructed on the basis of the since 1982 annually published statistics of the World Christian Encyclopaedia. According to their data at present live approximately 1.3 billion Christians in Asia, Africa and Latin America, compared with 531 million in Europe (including Russia), and 227 million in North America. Already in the year 2025 the Christianity in the south is to increase to 1.7 billion, while it will increase in North America comparatively slightly to 270 million, in Europe however it will decrease to 514 million members. With 2,15 per cent the growth rate is highest for Africa, while for Europe a negative trend is estimated with 0,17 per cent. If one refers the development of the last 100 years, then the part of 70 per cent Europeans of the Christian world population in the year 1900 will decrease to 20 per cent in the year 2025 {6}.

It is to be owed not least to this statistic documentation that the phenomenon of the south migration received increasingly attention in the eighties of the last century. The term of the "third church" introduced by the mission scientist Walbert Bühlmann to mark the increasing importance of the churches in the so-called Third World {7}, was in the course of the eighties replaced by the term "majority church". A connection between the above all demographically caused growth of Christianity in the south and the change of the Christian religion associated with it, can be made however only by a further aspect: the changes of Christianity in the south, which happen regardless of the fact that for instance the African Christianity had its own profile already in the past.

Charles Peter Wagner, assistant professor at the Fuller Theological Seminary, formulated the term "third wave" in an article published 1983 in the magazine "Pastoral Renewal", with which he tried to understand the changes of Christianity in the course of its South migration:



The Evangelical Christianity is in the process to open to the supernatural working of the Holy Spirit, which charismatic and Pentecostal Christians had experienced already for one century, but without joining the Pentecostal Movement {8}. Thus he described in retrospect a trend, which became apparent already in the sixties and seventies of the last century. While the Pentecostal Movement was at some places already at the beginning of the colonial age of importance in African Christianity, and was also in this early phase of its spreading by no means a homogeneous movement, the Bible Fundamentalism is a comparatively new phenomenon in Africa.

After independence its spreading was prepared by a second wave of Christian mission, which - outgoing from North America - began to fill up that vacuum left by the gradual retreat of European missionaries. Well, this American mission wave was in its spirituality shaped by the Pentecostal Movement and by the about the end of the nineteenth century developed Protestant "Holiness Movement", but it was, as it were, seized of a missionary eagerness that coined the term 'Evangelicalism', and which retroactively let - by the interaction of mission campaigns in Latin America and Asia - develop new Pentecostal Churches also in the west: The financing and the realization of the mission campaigns made it on the one hand necessary to organize oneself institutionally better, and on the other hand to place oneself more strongly on a Biblical foundation.

In the America of the seventies the Pentecostal Movement, that had its roots in the African Diaspora, moved by prosperity and urbanisation more into the social centre. Those Pentecostal groupings, which were connected in their beginnings with anti-colonial or anti-racist movements and looked for their identity for a specific African spirituality, gradually gave up this identification or isolated themselves. A prominent example for this is the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME) that in the course of the American emancipation movement split off the Methodist Church. Exemplary for Africa be mentioned the 1930 in Kenya created African Independent Pentecostal Church of Kenya (AIPCK). It developed also an independent public education, as alternative to the colonial public education maintained by the Presbyterian and Anglican Church. By these developments finally an increasing approach between Pentecostal and Bible-fundamentalist movements became possible in a third mission wave that began at the end of the eighties and continues up to this day {9}. It differs from the preceding second mission wave so far as it met in Africa independent, well established churches that for their part were extremely active in missionary work. Thus the contemporary Evangelical Movement presents itself no longer as a mission movement from north to south, but as an international, increasingly global network that is dominated financially by the north, but according to the number of followers by the south.



The historically grown interrelation between north and south, particularly between Africa and North America, is of central importance not only for the spreading of a Bible-fundamentalist Evangelicalism in Africa, but also for the increasing social and political acknowledgment of the so-called "Religious Right" in the USA since the middle of the eighties. On the one hand the Evangelical missionaries won (and win) prominence in the international development co-operation, since they have access to local networks also in remote regions that are shaped by crises and violent conflicts. Thereby they are potential partners in the American foreign and security policy in the peripheral regions of the south, which are however of increasing strategic importance, if they have important raw materials. Also on the part of the American government this role is increasingly taken into account, for instance by the passing of the "Charitable Choice Provision" in the course of the reform of the social welfare legislation 1996, and the so-called "Faith Based and Community Initiatives Programs" in the year 1999, by which religious organizations are to be included more strongly into national and international welfare programs; this applies likewise to the definition of freedom of religion in the year 1998 as an important aim of American foreign policy, among other things with the intention of diminishing legal and ideological obstacles for the mission of religious Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) in the countries of the south {10}.

On the other hand the Evangelical Movement grows by migration and missionary work also in North America, for instance by African missionaries in the Afro-American Diaspora. Observers of the past two American presidency elections largely agree that the election success of the republicans was not least secured also by the increasing support for African and Latin American immigrants, who in the past in their majority were rather attached to the democrats {11}. In this connection the statistics of the World Christian Encyclopaedia again present an interesting trend: The founders and leaders of the Evangelical Churches, which are growing in North America and Europe fastest, originate increasingly from Africa, Asia and Latin America. Church leaders in Africa represent this situation gladly as "African revenge"; now it is time for Africans to do missionary work in Europe and North America. The establishment of a branch church in the USA is for many Evangelical African communities a declared aim, and an absolute evidence of the success of their missionary efforts {12}.


Evangelical Homogeneity in the Context of Social Change

On the average twenty to thirty per cent of the Christian population in Africa south of the Sahara are today more or less firm followers of the Evangelical Movement.



This group is slightly growing compared with the members of the Catholic, Anglican and Protestant churches. This exodus trend is only conditionally stopped by the accommodation of charismatic renewal movements into the traditional Christian churches. The strongest migration to Evangelicalism can be seen however from the Independent African Pentecostal Churches {13}.

The predominantly ethnologically shaped Independent Pentecostal Churches distinguish themselves, just as the by social and cultural milieus and different political surroundings moulded mainstream Christian churches, by a high level of heterogeneity. Early charismatic movements, as for instance the "East African Revival", have settled down in many, but not at all in all traditional Christian churches. Something similar applies to the different beginnings of inculturation, which was realized rather in the English-speaking Africa than in the French-speaking area {14}. The friendly or antagonistic relations with former colonial powers shape still today almost everywhere the relationship to political parties and to the state machinery. In place of an independent national sphere a sphere of political hegemony was formed in many countries of Africa after independence, in which state, government and government party coincided. So the European traditional Christian churches could distinguish themselves often not from a clearly recognizable sphere of the state, but only from a political power structure, and became so quasi civilian actors. In contrast to this the Evangelical Churches that are rather moulded by the American culture, behaved rather as representatives of denominational particular interests.

The term "Independent Churches" or also "Free Churches" by which Pentecostal and Evangelical Churches are defined occasionally in distinction to the so-called mainstream Christian churches is quite misleading. Evangelical Churches in Africa are not formally attached to European or North American churches, but the financial dominance of the churches in the north leads often to the adoption of poorer church communities in the south {15}. Those informal affiliations, usually termed as "partnership", happen again on regional and local level. The form of co-operation which develops thereby reminds of franchising contracts, where the small single church markets the products of the co-operation partner. The so developing institutional constitution of the Evangelical Movement can be described as network that aims not at local anchorage and vertical differentiation but at horizontal propagation. The affiliation to Evangelicalism is substantially realized by personal loyalty, and not by a formal integration into a hierarchically differentiated institution. By the movement character the role of charismatic personalities is placed into the foreground. With the imparting of faith these leaders are subjected however to the same mechanisms of adjustment as their followers.



A horizontal spreading movement gets its strength and integrity out of a consent that is based on conformity. Hence there are hardly any contrasting currents formed within Evangelicalism. Rather individual aspects of Evangelical theology are differently accented, which are to be outlined shortly in the following.


Prosperity by Own Effort or Grace

As mission movement Evangelicalism is competing in a pluralistic religious context, and is looking for proximity to unbelievers and members of different faiths - in Sub-Saharan Africa particularly to Islam. This so-called "Frontier Mission" is orientated towards competition. Its extrinsic, polarizing features take effect in the religious discourses particularly by negative identifications. Other faith traditions are demonized, and so the urgency of God's mission order is underlined: to undertake in the already begun final time a last, global effort of mission - a conception that is expressed by the term "Great Commission Christians". In the discourse style of the classical Bible Fundamentalism the true teachings are marked by the refusal of false doctrines: A faith statement can be introduced only by a contradiction, and can also be memorized only by formulating contrary sentences. With regard to the contents of one's own definition there remain "objective" Bible statements that have all a directing, imperative character. The Bible is a code for personal and social reconstruction; it can only be decoded by people who are inspired by the Spirit, hence only by those who have been chosen to be baptised in the Spirit. Only those who do not possess this status, will fall back to the study of history or languages and will thereby nevertheless disfigure God's revelation. The Spirit-filled Bible reading however leads to the decoding of a success formula: "Making Your Faith Work", reads the popular title of Evangelical advice booklets {16}.

Directives for the order of social communities are taken from the books of the Old Testament and St Paul's letters. But these social reconstructive approaches do not aim at establishing a just, stable or harmonious social order, but at personal prospering in an unjust, irreconcilable world. They react to the increasing social inequality that leads not only between north and south but above all also within local communities to tensions. Against scenes of promiscuity, corruption and barbarism, which are produced by discourses on AIDS, poverty and ethnical conflicts, the image of the cleansing baptism in the Spirit is set. Thus the community of saints is, as it were, soaring above the inner contradictions and ambivalences of social change.

In Africa this change implies since the beginning of the nineties a liberalization, pluralization and privatization in almost all social areas.



In the course of the liberalization of the market not only the fixing of boundaries, but also principles of efficiency become more and more important. The done work is measured thereby most of all at its final point - the result in form of obvious success: Prosperity and social reputation are attained by one's own effort or by God's grace, in each case however not at the expense of others. This orientation towards performance, success and reward, with which the elements of healing in the Spirit and the charismata - typical for the early Pentecostal Movement - are taken up and interpreted anew, is summarized by Paul Gifford in the term "Prosperity Gospel" {17}. In external communication the representation of miraculous healings in the service or the evidence of sudden wealth as manifestation of one's baptism in the Spirit are often proven as means of spreading and strengthening faith.

Against such a symbolic understanding speak however behaviours that can be seen with many followers of the movement. Apart from the fact that - on the search for the crucial break-through - many believers are migrants between the different Evangelical Churches, there develop often extreme psychological dependences. They express themselves among other things in material allowances to the church, by which the faithful get often on the verge of their financial possibilities. Also with the donation practice the principle of efficiency applies: Only those who sow a lot will harvest a lot. Both aspects are connected with an authoritarian fixation to a charismatic leader whose image can correspond to that of someone who works miracles of healing, or also to that of an all-knowing mentor whose prophetic and healing strengths depend on the devotion and loyalty of his followers {18}.

With its institutional constitution the Evangelical Movement is no singular phenomenon, but fits well in the landscape of charitable NOGs which follow similar organizational rules. In the USA as well as in Africa private welfare organizations play a basic role in the organization of the public area, and continue - in the course of privatization and structural adjustment programs - to gain significance. The often quoted strict separation from church and state, hence the pronounced institutional secularism of the USA, must be seen in this context of a relative weakness of the state, and a traditionally pluralistic church landscape. The public prominence of religion in the USA is no contradiction to that, but is based on a privatization of religion that originates in the European discourses on secularism. It fits in a pronounced corporative model of society, where particular interests are not masked or taboo. The weakly developed national institution 'public welfare' corresponds in its turn to a meritocratical ideology that links eternal salvation to human performance and has its idea-historical roots in Calvinism {19}.

With African politics one generally associates the principles of clientele and nepotism, but not of meritocracy. But in the course of programs for structural adjustment in the eighties and nineties the protectionist mechanisms were weakened.



Hence the propagation of an Evangelicalism, which - on the basis of an individual relation to God - promises prosperity and success also beyond family and social relations, may stand also in connection with a gradual change of political and social pattern of career. The Calvinist Protestantism of New England - with its laying emphasis on individual liberty, autonomy and direct responsibility - works also in secular discourses powerfully as ideological support of a free-market economy. In Africa an Evangelicalism that takes up particularly these motives, may thus act also as vehicle of an ideology without which the new economic and political institutions of Africa would hardly function. In view of the missing concurrence of social changes, and the therewith associated co-existence of different value systems and social and political structures, just the meritocratic and polarizing tendencies of Evangelicalism have the potential to depoliticize the social discourses, to fix authoritarianism and to intensify conflicts with other religious communities.


Conflicts Between Religions

Conflicts between religious communities are - before the background of the meritocratic paradigm change - not always settled by force but above all in the economic sphere, particularly in the private education and welfare sector. In the meantime an increasing part of private schools and universities in Africa is maintained by Evangelical organizations {20}. Usually it is a matter of polytechnics and business schools from which many - in alliance with American private universities - confer international diplomas. In the sphere of development co-operation Evangelical NGOs are increasingly active in the sector of small credit grantors, and in the promotion of small companies. Thus they lie in the trend of the international development policy: in the fight against poverty it shifts its focal point increasingly from the classical promotion of infrastructure to the promotion of enterprises.

Also Islamic organizations with a strong missionary profile try to gain a foothold there, and create own private universities with similar training offers. Such enterprises are rejected by orthodox groupings, because they have their origin in a western or Christian understanding of mission, but the representatives of Islamic reform movements justify their activities with the fact that the increasing presence of Christian organizations in the welfare sector discriminates Muslims against Christians and makes thus necessary an alternative Islamic offer {21}. The term "discriminate" does not imply automatically a direct discrimination on the side of the Christian relief organizations.



But their projects are often accomplished in union with local church communities - hence the Christian population is reached first; Funds of Christian relief organizations are by Muslims also occasionally regarded as not neutral, as this can reversely be the case with Christians in relation to Islamic relief organizations.

Since the introduction of the Faith Based and Community Initiatives Programs the public allowance to religious organizations increased in the USA constantly. According to a report of the US government the number of projects granted in the context of this program rose between 2002 and 2004 by 88 per cent {22}. In addition Evangelical organizations have a remarkable reservoir of private donation funds. The American relief organization World Vision for example could increase its annual budget from 525 million US Dollar in the year 2001 to 686 million in the year 2003. Thereby the part of private money and material gifts amounted to more than 70 per cent. Many smaller Evangelical NGOs with annual budgets of ten to 40 million US dollars, such as Evangelical Word Relief, United Way Int., Blessings or Salvation Army operate even almost exclusively on the basis of private donations, with throughout increasing budgets {23}.

The expansion of the Evangelical organizations within the range of international development co-operation coincides with a decreasing financial engagement of national and private secular organizations - partly due to financial bottlenecks, but in the case of the European Union also due to a decreasing interest in the region since the end of the Cold War. As far as Islamic NGOs are concerned comparable statistics are missing. But according to the historian John Hunwick also Islamic mission organizations extended their presence in Africa. Similarly as within the range of western development co-operation not (that much) the national development funds of Arab countries or Islamic funds and banks gain since the beginning of the nineties in significance, but rather the direct allowances of Islamic private organizations - usually in the way of scholarships, and by the founding of private education- and public health services {24}.


Different Legal Concepts

Apart from the welfare sector the legal system represents a second central area within which rivalries between Christian and Muslim communities happen. In many African countries began - in the course of the democratization wave since the beginning of the nineties - constitutional amendment processes for the establishment of multi-party systems.



In many places these reform processes lead to arguments about privileges and disadvantages of individual religious communities. Exemplary the Kenyan constitutional reform is mentioned here: In Kenya by constitutional amendments in 1995 and in 1997 a multiple party system was established gradually. In the year 2001 it came finally for the first time since the independence of the country to a democratic change of government. The interreligious Ufungamano initiative that had been launched by the Anglican Church, and in which beside the Catholic Church and different Protestant Churches also Islamic and Hindu religious communities participated, was considerably involved in the realisation of the reforms. From 1995 on belonged at the request of Daniel arap Moi, who was president at that time, also representatives of Evangelical churches to the initiative.

After repeated attempts to block the initiative by constitutional complaints and late nominations, the Evangelical Churches split off 1997 and created a counter initiative propagating a governmental course under the banner of patriotism and reconciliation. Since the change of government the lobbying of the Evangelical Churches concentrates on the abolishment of the in the Kenyan constitution embodied Islamic Khadi courts. The Evangelical umbrella organization Kenya Church, that is considerably active within this range, is supported among other things by the international attorney lobby Advocates International. It has its head office in the USA, but is represented nearly world-wide in national branch organizations as Evangelical Lawyer's Fellowships {25}. Also in Uganda representatives of Evangelical Churches submitted a petition for the abolishment of Khadi courts.

In both countries these initiatives are however not justified by reservations against the pluralism of law that is connected with the accommodation of Islamic law, or with a refusal of the Islamic family law as such. The argumentation aims rather at the fact that in both countries Muslims are a minority that is privileged by the present legal situation. In both countries the authority of the Khadi courts is limited to family law. Since Islam permits polygamy, their task consists above all in clarifying hereditary disputes, and questions of maintenance and of care and custody that would not be met by the Kenyan or Ugandian civil law. But at the same time Evangelical representatives demand also law changes which affect the civilian Marriage Law, in Uganda for instance the cancelling of a law that may simplify divorces, and the refusal of a bill planning certain rights for unmarried couples {26}.

Following similar logic representatives of Evangelical churches suggested proving Kenya as Christian nation in the preamble of the new constitution, because more than 80 per cent of the population were Christians. This request failed not least for lack of support by the Catholic, Anglican and Protestant churches.



At the end of November 2005 a constitutional draft that planned Khadi courts for family law further on within the range of secular jurisdiction, was rejected with 58 per cent of the delivered votes. Evangelical church leaders as well as representatives of Islamic communities that had advocated for an extension of the Khadi jurisdiction celebrated the result of the popular vote as victory in their own behalf {27}.

The focusing on majority conditions shapes also the public debate about the introduction of Scharia in the predominantly Muslim north of Nigeria. A discussion with regard to the contents of Scharia jurisdiction takes place primarily in academic circles. During the mobilization of the religious communities for or against Scharia the majority question is dominating: Those who have the majority of the population are legally entitled to political power, and thus to the definition of the juridical system - the minority has to yield to this dictate or to leave the Federal State. Instead of leading an ideological discussion one takes pains to secure the territorial jurisdiction. In the so-called Middle Belt of Central Nigeria where since the end of the eighties the violent excesses between Christians and Muslims increased, the juggling with figures seems to be of special explosiveness, because the majority conditions are not clear at some places.


Denominalization of Policy

But the example of Nigeria shows also the complexity of the local religion conflicts, which are mixed with ethnical, social and economic tensions. For the replacement of an ethnical by a denominational corporatism there must be a certain measure of spatial and social separation between the different religious communities. But above all historical factors are decisive for that: for instance colonial mission campaigns along territorially defined ethnical groups, and the definition of national borders. In the course of the colonial mission at many places groups of denominations came into being that could be identified with ethnical groups. But long before Christianity arrived and began its missionary work Islam spread in West and East Africa usually around a political centre of power, and unfolded through many mission campaigns an integrative strength that led by proselytizing to the creation of larger language and ethnic groups - like the Hausa Fulani in North Nigeria or the Swahili at the East African coast. These Islamized ethnic groups were integrated by the colonial fixing of boundaries however into ethnologically and religiously pluralistic national states, and thereby also subjected to the logic of an ethnological corporatism.

With the establishment of a denominational territorial sovereignty the idea of a tribal religion outweighs the idea of a universal religion. Such an understanding of religion contradicts grossly the understanding of Christian and Islamic mission movements aiming at the overcoming of ethnological fragmentation.



But in the argument with local competing groups the "tribal reflex" becomes effective. It understands territories and resources as traditional possessions. The personalization of power plays there a central role where the fusion of religious and political ranges becomes particularly obvious: Both on regional and national level the governor or president appears as representative of his religious community.

The coinage of politics by ethnic factors, where the decision of an election depends on the ethnological affiliation of the candidate, is in the course of democratization in many places not replaced by an ideological competition, but by denominational policy. As well heads of state as local politicians fall back in election campaigns explicitly on the support of their religious community, and use their confessional identity as political "quality seal" {28}. Thereby they recur to typical Evangelical motives, as for instance the baptism in the Spirit, as indication of their divine choice and mission. Violent arguments between different religious communities in the apron of presidential elections or plebiscites follow at some places almost seamlessly the ethnic unrests flaring up in the past in the surroundings of elections. The winner enters the political stage as saver. He is reconciled with the defeated and promises a glorious future to the people united under his leadership.


What Will Remain Of The Scenarios?

Jenkins' initially mentioned thesis of a new edition of medieval religious wars can, with all the problems of such epoch overlapping comparisons, not be completely ruled out. Present conflicts between religious communities in Africa become apparent not only in form of economic competition or law cases, but lead also to arguments by force. They are manifested in sporadic threatening bearings, in locally limited violent encroachments and pogroms and finally in long-term conflicts similar to civil war. Religious communities however are - contrary to tribal communities - not embodied locally but part of supra-regional discourses and networks. Hence they act also in a global context that is characterized by asynchronous processes of change and where pluralization and liberalization unfold likewise in a nationally, politically and legally undifferentiated area. Before this background of uncertainty and inner strife the socially reconstructive ("sozialrekonstruktivistischen") and polarizing features of Evangelicalism gain in significance - and that not only before the background of the conservatism of African societies that could - by the fast progression of the industrialized north - be defined in the sense of social backwardness.



Instead of Christianity's change in the course of its south migration rather the interrelations between north and south come to the fore. They take place not on the basis of the heterogeneity of the different societies, but on the basis of a partial correlation of asynchronous processes of change. While religious discourses in North America may gain in prominence in relation to secular ideological discourses, the political resort to religion in the African context can be explained rather by the decreasing importance of ethnic structures, and by the want of profiled ideological discourses. This connection of local and global processes makes a confrontation between geographically defined blocks, as it is still suggested by Huntington, very improbably. It rather opens the possibility of a progressive fragmenting of local communities with a simultaneous integration in a global discourse- and economic area.



{1} S. P. Huntington, Der Kampf der Kulturen (München 2002).

{2} Vgl. B. Grill, Die Mähdrescher Gottes, in: Die Zeit, 27.5.2004.

{3} In the German press for exempla recently M. Bitala, Das Geschäft mit Gott, in: SZ, 19.8.2005; Th. Thielke, The Growing Continent of Christians, in: Der Spiegel, 14.4.2005; D. Johnson, Afrikas Verführer, in: taz Magazin, 29.5.2004.

{4} Ph. Jenkins, The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity (Oxford 2002).

{5} R. D. Kaplan, The Coming Anarchy, in: The Atlantic Monthly, 273 (1994) 2.

{6} All numbers are taken from the Lausanne report (of the Center for the Study of Global Christianity), which is based on the statistics of the World Christian Encyclopaedia: T. M. Johnson, P. F. Crossing u. B. J. Ryu, Looking Forward; An Overwiev of World Evangelization , 2005-1025, Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, 2004, to see under

{7} W. Bühlmann, The Coming of the Third Church. An Analysis of the Present and Future of the Church (Slough 1976; German: Es kommt die dritte Kirche: Eine Analyse der kirchlichen Gegenwart und Zukunft).

{8} C. P. Wagner, The Third Wave?, in: Pastoral Renewal, Juli/August 1983.

{9} The term "Bible Fundamentalism" is leaned on a series of publications, edited by the Bible Institute of Los Angeles between 1912 and 1917, under the title "The Fundamentals: A Testimony to the Truth". In the essays collected there opposite standpoints were formulated against the critical-historical Bible exegesis. Hence with the term "Bible Fundamentalism" is connected a specific way of reading the Bible, which is aligned to the moment of contradiction, and has a strong "imperative" character, but it is not - as occasionally stated - about a general loyalty to the word or writings of the Holy Scriptures (literal sense); for the aspect of the imperative reading see V. Crapanzano, Serving the Word. Literalism in America from the Pulpit to the Bench (New York 2000).

{10} Cf. Faith-Based and Community Initiatives Programs:; State Department International Religious Freedom Report:

{11} Cf. to this A. Campo-Flores and H. Fineman, A Latin Power Surge, in: Newsweek, 30.5.2005. To the role of denomination, election pattern, and value debates see e.g. T. Egan, State of the Union: The Evangelical Vote, 9.11.2004, BBC-online:; cf. also Editorial: Bush II, in: America, 15.9.2004.

{12} Cf. Johnson and others (A. 6) 8.

{13} Cf. D. Barret, G. Kurian u. Todd M. Johnson, World Christian Encyclopaedia, vol. 2 (Oxford 2001).

{14} Cf. E. Marey, African Theology: Inculturation and Liberation (Maryknoll 1993).

{15}Cf. more in detail P. Gifford, African Christianity. Its Public Role (Bloomington 1998) 45f.

{16} So e.g. Renewal Christian Centre: R. Taylor, Making your Faith work (Solihull 2005); Christ Embassy: Ch. Oyakhilome, How to make your faith work (2005).

{17} Cf. St. Brouwer, P. Gifford and S. Rose, Exporting the American Gospel: Global Christian Fundamentalism (London 1996) 198ff.

{18} Cf. to this more in detail K. Hofer, Towards a Political Theology of Evangelicalism, in: the same, Implications of a Global Religious Movements for Local Political Spheres (im Druck).

{19} Cf. D. P. Franklin, American Political Culture and Constitutionalism, in: the same and M. J. Baun, Political Culture and Constitutionalism. A Comparative Approach (New York 1995) 45-49.

{20} Cf. K. Hofer, The Role of Evangelical NGOs in International Development. A Comparative Case Study of Kenya and Uganda, in: Afrika Spectrum 3 (2003) 387-390. To the increasing importance of Evangelical NGOs in the African health sector cf. also J. Hearn, The 'Invisible' NGO: US Evangelical Mission in Kenya, in: Journal of Religion in Africa 32 (2002) 1.

{21} So for instance a representative of the Islamic Reform Group Izala in Jos (Nigeria) in an interview with the author in June 2005.

{22} Cf. White Hosue Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, Grants to Faith-Based Organizations, Fiscal Year 2004, 1.5.2005, to see under

{23} Cf. Private Voluntary Organizations Registry, USAID:

{24} Cf. J. Hunwick, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Wider World of Islam, in: E. E. Rosander u. D. Westerlund, African Islam and Islam in Africa. Entcounters between Sufis and Islamists (Athens OH 1997) 49f.

{25} Cf.

{26} Cf. to this the websites of the different countries, which can be visited by the portal; to the individual requests and draft constitutions cf.

{27} Cf. D. Okwembah, Critical Issues that Floored Draft, in: Daily Nation, 24.11.2005.

{28} Exemplary be here referred to the biography of the Nigerian President O. Obasanjo, This Animal Called Man (Abeokuta 1999), in which he reports of a baptism in the Spirit during his arrest as political prisoner during the Abache military rule. As "born-again Christians" are seen also the Zambian President Chiluba, the former Kenyan president Daniel arap Moi, as well as formerly the presidents Youweri Museveni (Uganda) and "Le Caméléon" Mathieu Kérékou (Benin), who were formerly attached to Marxism.


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