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Title: A survey and theological analysis of the spiritual and Pentecostal-Evangelical churches in Freetown, Sierra Leone with special emphasis on the influences of the indigenous religious pneumatology
Author: Smith, D. R. M.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1995
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Experiencing and obtaining Spiritual power is the primary goal of indigenous religious activity. The failure of evangelical missionaries to recognise and make use of this primal praeparatio evangelica, led to the development of an educated and elitist Church in Freetown from 1815 onwards. Krio Christianity failed to make accommodation for the African spiritual heritage and thus produced a very alien and exclusive form of African Christianity. The first form of Christianity to take root in Freetown was that carried across the Atlantic by the Nova Scotians in 1792. Their Christianity, born in the Great Evangelical Awakening of the seventeenth century, developed independent of White control. Enthusiasm, emotion and pneumatological manifestations were major features of their worship. Nova Scotian Christianity eventually lost its revivalistic fervour and was eventually taken over by Krio Christianity and British missionary control. Krio Christianity failed, however, to meet the Krio's own existential needs for spiritual power. Problem-solving power was sought along indigenous lines. This produced in Krio Christianity a religious dualism and an identity crisis. In 1947, the Nigerian Church of the Lord (Aladura) arrived in Freetown. The "Adejobis" challenged the Krio Christian community, but by and large, having taken the evangelical Christianity of the Victorian era as their own traditional religion, they did not receive it. The Spiritual churches appealed more the non-Krio residents of the city, and particularly to the illiterate. The style of Christianity introduced was highly indigenised. In many aspects it appeared as the indigenous pneumatology expressed in Christian forms and terms. Its main attractions lay in the areas of healing, problem-solving, and fortune-telling revelations.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available