The Future of Faith by ProQuest

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									The main “pull” factor has been a mission        more theologically reflective, encouraging      does not answer questions concerning
reversal whereby Africans are inspired to        African immigrant churches in Europe to         how African spirituality can effectively
proclaim the Gospel in Europe. It is hoped       engage the West in practical ways. The          transform the European religious ethos
that through this development, Europeans         African church in Europe is strong and          and what the possible results of this process
will become stimulated to regain the love        is meeting the spiritual and existential        might be. Ultimately the reevangelization
of God they have abandoned.                      needs of those it serves. But it also faces     of Europe belongs to the Europeans them-
      The book has seven chapters. In the        challenges, including ethnocentrism,            selves, not to Africans. There are already
first three, the author takes readers into       paternalism, and the notion of swart            internal immigrants from Eastern Europe
the African spiritual world. She argues          gevaar (Afrikaans: “black threat”; i.e., fear   crossing over to Western Europe and
that Africans do not separate the world of       of black presence).                             contributing to European reconversion.
the primordial universe from the natural              The book is a powerful contribution to     Perhaps the God who became African can
world. They cross the open frontiers             our understanding of immigrant churches         yet again become European.
between the two at will. “In Africa,             in Europe. It successfully comes to terms                             —Caleb O. Oladipo
‘religion’ refers to the widespread belief in    with African spirituality and raises an
an invisible world, inhabited by spiritual       important point in stating that “African        Caleb O. Oladipo, from Nigeria, is the Duke K.
forces or entities that are deemed to have       Christianity reflects a strong element of       McCall Professor of Mission and World Christianity
effective powers over the material world”        continuity with the continent’s original        at the Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond,
(p. 1). The tone of the last four chapters is    religious traditions” (p. 99). The book         in Virginia.




Give Jesus a Hand! Charismatic                                                                   has given rise to populist middle-class
Christians: Populist Religion and                                                                religion, thriving in the established and
Politics in the Philippines.                                                                     nonestablished churches, both Roman
                                                                                                 Catholic and Protestant. While populist
By Christl Kessler and Jürgen Rüland. Quezon                                                     movements often weaken resistance to
City: Ateneo de Manila Univ. Press, 2008.                                                        authoritarianism by turning inward for
Pp. xi, 226. Paperback $37.                                                                      renewal, the movements in the Philippines
                                                                                                 cannot be so easily pigeonholed. For many
Scholars working and living in the Phil-              Following the social theory of Peter       charismatic Christians personal renewal is
ippines have been waiting for studies            Berger and Thomas Luckman, the authors          the only way to induce the rich to change.
on the growing influence of charismatic          attempt to uncover the social lifeworld of      The new movements often see their work
movements among Filipinos. While there           charismatic Christians in contemporary          as providing opportunities for the poor,
are a few helpful efforts such as Lode           Philippines, with the aim of understanding      on the one hand, and, on the other hand,
Wostyn’s “Catholic Charismatic Renewal           the religious convictions that help them        renewal for their corrupt and immoral
in the Philippines,” in Asian and Pentecostal:   cope with life. Given this limited aim, the     government. The political attitudes these
The Charismatic Face of Christianity in Asia,    book succeeds. It provides helpful and          movements encourage seem to foster both
ed. Allan Anderson and Edmond Tang               reliable insights into the current impact       democratic and theocratic tendencies.
(2005), pp. 363–84, and Katharine Wiegele’s      of charismatic movements.                            This excellent study will hopefully
Investing in Miracles (1995), no one has              The authors combine survey- and            not be the authors’ last.
provided a reliable and thoroughgoing            interview-based studies with historical                                —Paul D. Matheny
social-scientific study of their broad impact    and theoretical interpretation. They argue
until now. The authors, Christl Kessler and      that the current instability of political       Paul D. Matheny is Professor of C
								
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