A Letter To Africa About Africa: Reviewed

This is an old post from a few years ago that I’m importing into this system.

I’ve been able to read more lately, which is quite nice. It seems that my old job tended to wear me out mentally and when I would get home, didn’t have the energy to do much requiring invested thought. I still read, mind you, just not as much as I am now.

The last book I read is entitled A Letter to Africa About Africa by Kasongo Munza. Munza was an ordained UMC pastor from the Congo and was director of a training center in Zambia when he passed away in 2005.

His book looks in depth at the prevailing African worldview, particularly that of subsaharan Africa, and analyzes how it (a) has led to the vast problems facing Africa and (b) how it matches up against Jesus’ view of the kingdom of God.

I didn’t quite know what to expect upon picking it up. Part of me worried that this was going to be another book focused on replacing the African worldview with an American Evangelical one. I’ll readily recognize that there is much in the African worldview that needs a critical eye, but a replacement of one broken worldview with another broken one isn’t an answer I wanted to read about (I’ve already seen enough proposals like this).

Thankfully this book was not that and because of this I found it quite helpful. It was a detailed analysis of the African worldview — something necessary to understand if you are going to even begin to attempt spiritual and community development type work. It also provided a framework for building a new worldview steeped in God’s kingdom — not based in throwing everything African out and not importing everything western in.

I think it worth writing in some detail about the African worldview so that people have an understanding of the good and the bad inherent in it. And that task I’m going to save for another day. But for now, if you would like to read a fascinating and small book on why Africa is the way it is, pick up A Letter to Africa About Africa. And if you ever plan on doing ministry here, make that a priority.

March 21, 2016


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