Monday, December 29, 2014

IBMR explores "Witchcraft and Mission Studies"

 

The January 2015 issue of the International Bulletin of Missionary Research explores the topic of "Witchcraft and Mission Studies."Essays exploring this topic include:

"Putting Witch Accusations on the Missiological Agenda: A Case from Northern Peru by Robert J. Priest

"Beyond the Fence: Confronting Witchcraft Accusations in the Papua New Guinea Highlands" by Philip Gibbs

"Healing Communities: Contextualizing Responses to Witch Accusations" by Steven D. H. Rasmussen, with Hannah Rasmussen

"Toward a Christian Response to Witchcraft in Northern Ghana"by Jon P. Kirby

"Witchcraft Accusations and Christianity in Africa" by J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu

As an Evangelical who has researched and written on Witchcraft in the West academically, who has engaged Witches in relationships and conversations, and who has called for work to address human rights abuses in South Africa and elsewhere in relation to accusations of Witchcraft, I'm glad to see IBMR address this topic. I have yet to read the issue and am a little nervous about how sympathetically it will be explored, but some of the comments from J. Nelson Jennings in the opening editorial give me hope:
"Contemporary Europeans and North Americans may blush at the early modern witch trials in Europe and in Europe’s North American colonies. Accordingly, modern Western theologians and missiologists have for generations conveniently turned a blind eye to such phenomena, which have been rumored to take place elsewhere. In actuality, however, witchcraft-related activities—including violent witch hunts directed toward women and children—stubbornly plague Christian communities all around the world. Missiologists must catch up with these acute, long-neglected spiritual and pastoral issues."
In order to read this issue you must register your email address for free. You can find the publication at http://www.internationalbulletin.org/archive/all/2015/1.

5 comments:

Steve Hayes said...

This is something that is long overdue. I've been trying to persuade the Southern African Missiological Society (SAMS) to pay some attention to this topic for the last 20 years, but no one seems to be interested.

Robert J Priest said...

The opening editorial is by Nelson Jennings, not Robert Priest.

Robert J. Priest

John W. Morehead said...

Duly noted and corrected. Thanks for stopping by.

J. Nelson Jennings said...

The IBMR has just moved to a totally open access format such that you do not even have to give an email address to register and access the contents. As editor, I welcome one and all to visit us, to spread the word to others, and to give us your feedback.

J. Nelson Jennings said...

The IBMR has just moved to a totally open access format such that you do not even have to give an email address to register and access the contents. As editor, I welcome one and all to visit us, to spread the word to others, and to give us your feedback.