Christianity in Africa

Chapter 16 of Things Fall Apart explains the involvement of the Christian missionaries in the village. They say that they are there to teach them about the real God, and that the gods that they worship are false gods. “And he told them about this new God, the Creator of all the world and all the men and women” (145). The missionary then says that in order to be saved, they must turn to the real God in order to be saved. “We have been sent by this great God to ask you to leave your wicked ways and false gods and turn to Him so that you may be saved when you die” (145). Christians have been involved in Africa for a while, and their involvement can be seen as both good and bad, depending on the viewpoint. If the intent of the missionaries is to save the villagers, then their involvement can be seen as for good, but it can also be seen as imperialistic. In more recent years, Christians have combined their beliefs with charity work in the form of mission trips, but even that has controversy surrounding it. Many Christian organizations have donated to African villages with the intent to do good, but by flooding the market with their donations (for example, shoes), they are hurting private businesses in the village that make shoes for a living, and in extreme cases, even putting them out of business. While some of their early charity work does unfortunately end up hurting village economies, many organizations have adapted their strategies in order to help develop the economies, instead of accidentally making them dependent on handouts. By doing good work for African villages in more recent years, have Christians made up for their past mistakes in Africa, or should they never have been involved in the first place?

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