About the book
Nothing has bound Africa and Europe more together than the history of Christianity. From Paradise onwards, the Church has been the communion of believers. As the Body of Jesus Christ she started in Jerusalem. Through the proclamation of the Gospel the Church soon reached parts of Africa and the Atlantic Coast, from where – after the Middle Ages and particularly in the 19th and 20th centuries – she took deep root in Sub-Saharan Africa. Today, in post-modern times, African Christianity is being challenged to re-plant the Church in secularized Europe.
This textbook for learners and teachers of the History of the Church focuses on the West and the South, on Europe and Africa, the continents whose histories have been increasingly intertwined since Antiquity. Since the 1960s, the classical dependence of the South on the North has changed dramatically. There is a clear shift in the centre of gravity of Christianity from the north to the south Atlantic, making African Christianity increasingly important. The future of European Christianity largely depends on a much-needed shift to mission-mindedness in the African churches.
Christianity in Eurafrica is an impressive book, meticulously researched and well written by a professional scholar. The first chapter includes some valuable historiographical guidelines for writing and understanding the History of the Church. In its first part, the book traces the history of the Church in the Middle East and Europe, explaining the roots of theological diversity to this day. In the second part, the author narrates how the Faith moved south, took root in African soil and grew independently. Many pictures and illustrations serve to further enliven the account. Steven Paas, taught Theology in Malawi for many years. He writes from a deep knowledge of and love for the Lord’s Church, especially in Africa and Europe.
This textbook on the history of Christianity in two continents fits with the curricula of institutions of theological training in Africa and the West. The content is especially aimed at students who prepare for the ministry and for Christian education. The book is, however, also invaluable for all scholars of the History of Christianity.
“With art and mastery, the author is able to tell the two thousand years old story of the progress of the wider Christian community as a whole and of its relationship to the rest of the world from Galillee to Africa through the Atlantic. The eagle view of the approach coupled with the details of christianisation in some regions and countries in Europe and in Africa make this texbook an invaluable resource.”
—Francois Pazisnewende Kaboré, SJ, PhD, Director, Jesuit University Institute, Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire