All human relationships can be affected by an unbalanced distribution, even if the imbalance is only a perceived imbalance, of power. This holds true whether one is referring to relationships between individuals or those of organizations or institutions. Read more
While Indaba principles and its processes are intended to assist in a meaningful discussion between opposing viewpoints concerning any subject of importance, there are some issues currently facing the Anglican Communion and its provinces that seem to be taking the limelight. Read more
The name Continuing Indaba can be a cause of confusion as it is an unfamiliar word to many. This short article sets out why the name was chosen and then goes on to describe its basis in Scripture and the Anglican understanding of Church as Communion.
Why the name ‘Indaba’
The name ‘Indaba’ was chosen because it signifies a move away from parliamentary processes that have been associated with conflict mitigation and mediation to processes of conflict transformation that are more in line with Pauline theology and successful models from the Hebrew Scriptures. Read more
Indaba, it’s a Zulu word that was made the “word of the day” during and after the Lambeth Conference of 2008. But has the “average” Anglican/Episcopalian even begun to understand what it is? Indaba is a community process in which important community issues are discussed with the aim to help community life thrive rather than to solve issues. Read more
The Episcopal Church’s [TEC] website proudly proclaims. “The Episcopal Church is a member province of the worldwide Anglican Communion.” Likewise, the Nippon Sei Ko Kai [日本聖公会 — “Japanese Holy Catholic Church”] describes itself as “The Anglican Communion in Japan.” But what does it mean to be the Anglican Communion? What are the bonds that hold us together? Read more
Genuine Christian living is always transcultural. In Christ, Jew and Gentile are called upon to eat together breaking centuries of division and hostility. Andrew Walls points out that the letter to the Ephesians ‘is a celebration of the union of irreconcilable entities, the breaking down of the wall of partition, brought about by Christ’s death (Eph. 2:13-18).’ Read more
We all read Scripture, but we don’t all understand it in the same way. Our context has an impact on the way we read and interpret Scripture. The structures of our families, whether we are rich, poor, or somewhere in between, and if we come from places where there are separations in society based on class; all of these things, and many more, affect our relationship with the Bible. Read more
Christian partnership did not then mean that the partners, although united in their missionary goals, were always in accord on how they were to carry out this mission – witness the disagreement between Peter and Paul in Galatians 2. Rather they were asked to face each other, and the roots of their disagreement and agreement, so openly that both could go forward in mutual love and respect into further creative activity. Read more
There is church because there is mission, not vice versa.
– David Bosch in Transforming Mission.
The Mission of God is the mission of the church. Bishop Michael Doe argues that this is true and quotes David Bosch as above. Even if that’s true, and I certainly wouldn’t argue against it, mission is still something the Church is meant to do. Read more
Continuing Indaba is underpinned by theological reflection. When the task of designing the Pilot Conversations began, reflection on the theological and cultural contexts of the conversations was instrumental in the work of cultural adoption and helped to transform the colonial history we share. The papers themselves are vital for a deepening understanding of Indaba, but the value of these papers goes far beyond this.For example, the pilot conversation between dioceses from Southern Africa, Ghana and Kenya would not have taken place without the writings from African theologians. The bishops, clergy and laity were able to grasp ownership of process through the trust generated by consultation with theologians from their own context. The theological resource hubs enabled genuine and equal participation in the process by people from diverse backgrounds. Our hope is that these papers, together with shorter reflections on Scripture, conflict, culture and Indaba will continue to resource those engaged in Indaba processes.
Nana Aberewa is a mythological figure among the Akan of Ghana who is believed to be full of wisdom and is always consulted whenever the people are confronted with any problem and would need to take decision. Read more
Dr Pratap C. Gine, Vice-Principal and Professor of New Testament at Serampore College, explores LGBT history in India and the Church.
Historical Cultural Background of the Issue in India
When and how the issue of homosexuality alerted the socio-cultural setting of India is uncertain. There are some scant references to this issue in the ancient scriptures related not only to its socio-cultural setting but also to religious fervour. It is likely that the practice of homosexuality ran side-by-side with temple prostitution. In Indian cultural history, human sexuality has been projected in different temples and historical sites such as Konarak Temple and Khajuraho. The main projections at these sites are sexual acts between men and women. Where temple prostitution is concerned, it is sometimes projected in female (Devadasi) form and rarely in male form. This, however, does not mean that homosexuals or homosexuality did not exist in ancient Indian culture and tradition. Read more
Revd. Sonal Christian, lecturer in Old Testament, Gujarat United School of Theology Ahmedabad, Gujarat, describes the place of Women in the CNI and suggest that an Indaba process might encourage better participation for both men and women in the Church.
Women and men have coexisted since their creation by God. In the creation account itself we are told that the Lord intended equality when God created them in His own image as male and female (Gen.1:27). After the fall this equality was lost, but it was re-established by Jesus on the cross as he died for all human beings irrespective of any barriers. Read more
The Rt. Revd Matthias K. Medadues-Badohu, Anglican Bishop of Ho, reflects on conflict resolution approaches in Ghana in relation to Continuing Indaba.
Life is relational. We relate with one another to have our needs met and our desires fulfilled. As John Donne (1572–1631) would put it, “No man is an island entire of itself”. Human nature and the human condition require that we depend on others for survival and satisfaction of our individual needs. Read more
Rev. Dr. Sammy Githuku, Senior Lecturer in Biblical Studies at St Paul’s University, Limuru, reflects on conflict following the 2007 Kenyan elections.
Human blood is heavy, and hinders the one who has shed it from fleeing. — a Sotho proverb Read more
Miranda N. Pillay, senior lecturer at the University of the Western Cape, offers a re-reading of Luke 4:39-9:51 and through an exploration of the silent narratives in the text offers a response to the call to call “to repent of the historic patriarchy of our faith”. Read more
Kojo Okyere, Department of Religion and Human Values University of Cape Coast reads Proverbs 18:13 in Ghanaian Life and Thought and offers reflections for the Anglican Communion.
The Ghanaian society, like many other African societies, is blessed with precious sayings which constitute nuggets of wisdom. Proverbs and other similar traditions are used by Ghanaians to communicate a message deemed to have some kind of mystical truth because of their appeal to the ancestors or elders. Read more
Rev Robinson Kariuki Mwangi Deputy Principle of St Andrew’s College, Kabare, Kenya draws a A paradigm for church partnership in the 21st century from the Biblical accounts of the monies collected for the saints in Jerusalem.
This paper attempts to highlight the historical setting, rationale and outcome of the collection for the Jerusalem church. It will further explore at length a paradigm of partnership in the Pauline letters at both the spiritual and economic levels, and what this might imply for the 21st century church, presently at the point of schism. Read more
Ven. Dr. Ndung’u Ikenye, Senior Lecturer in Pastoral Theology at St Paul’s University – Limuru, introduces a Kikuyu system for conversation and healing of community.
Njung’wa is a four-legged or four-footed Kikuyu stool which was traditionally used by Kikuyu male elders. Each elder took his stool to the elders meeting, “carried by important elders.” The stool represented ethnic and cultural authority, respect and integrity given to the elders. Read more
Rev. Philip Agik lecturer in Systematic Theology at Saint Paul’s University, Limuru, lects on the insights that can be drawn from the implications of Theological Discourse on Cultural Hermeneutics on Conflict Resolution for Continuing Indaba.
The Anglican Church, at this moment in its history that goes back to the 16th century when it pulled away from the Roman Catholic Church, is facing one of the hardest moments in relation to her indomitable unity as a flourishing family boasting a membership margin of 77 million. The tension of course is aimed at the four pillars upon which the church as a communion bases its theology: the episcopacy, tradition, reason and scripture. Read more