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Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae

On-line version ISSN 2412-4265

Abstract

TOGARASEI, Lovemore. Modern/charismatic Pentecostalism as a form of 'religious' secularisation in Africa. Studia Hist. Ecc. [online]. 2015, vol.41, n.1, pp. 56-66. ISSN 2412-4265.  http://dx.doi.org/10.17159/2412-4265/2015/v41n1a5.

This paper argues that although Pentecostalism seems to be reviving Christianity in Africa, judging by the number of people attracted to this brand of Christianity, there is an extent to which its practices and beliefs are secular. Perhaps it is this 'secularisation' that remains a pull factor of this kind of Christianity. To do so, the paper begins with a brief review of the secularisation theory, reaching a conclusion that secularisation involves people's concern with proximate (this worldly) issues rather than ultimate (post-mortem) issues. With this understanding of secularisation, the paper then discusses beliefs and practices of charismatic Pentecostal churches that this author believes make Pentecostalism a form of 'religious' secularisation. The focus will specifically be on Zimbabwean charismatic Pentecostal leaders' discourses of wealth and health.

Keywords : Pentecostalism; religious secularisation; Zimbabwe.

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