The Church in the World: A Historical-Ecclesiological Study of the Church of Uganda with Particular Reference to Post-Independence Uganda, 1962-1992

Niringiye, David Zac (1997) The Church in the World: A Historical-Ecclesiological Study of the Church of Uganda with Particular Reference to Post-Independence Uganda, 1962-1992. Doctoral thesis, University of Edinburgh.

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This thesis is an ecclesiological-historical study of the Church of Uganda. a member of the Anglican Communion, from its origins in the 1870s to the 1990s. with particular focus on the turbulent socio-political context of post-independence Uganda. The study of ecclesiology in an African context has not attracted sufficient scholarship, in comparison to the several African church histories and church-state studies. Most church studies in a socio-political context follows the religion-inpolitics or church-state methodological approaches. The present study seeks to redress this imbalance by developing an ecclesiological analysis of the Church of Uganda, utilising a `church-in-the-world' contextual approach, which gives priority to the indigenous narrative of the history and theological identity of the Church of Uganda. The account begins with the social-cultural-political context of Buganda in which the Church was born, as a result of the work of the Church Missionary Society (CN1S) missionaries and indigenous Ugandan agents. It identifies the formative factors in its early growth and expansion throughout the whole of Uganda, and the emergence of schismatic and revival movements. Due attention is given to the story of the East African Revival movement both as a critical factor in the indigenising of Christian faith in Uganda, and as the source of the methodology employed in this thesis to elucidate the `church-in-the-world' paradigm. In the post-independence period, spanning the thirty years from 1962-1992, the account of the Church follows four chronological political eras, characterised by varying degrees of socio-political turbulence. The first era is the period 1962-1971 during which there was a protracted conflict over the place of Buganda in the independent republic of Uganda, focused on the battle at Mengo in 1966. The story of the Church revolves around the development of a corporate identity in an environment charged with a Buganda versus the rest-of-Uganda divide, mirrored in the conflict between the leadership of the Church in Buganda, and Archbishop Erica Sabiti and other Provincial organs. The second period, from 1971-1979, is marked by the government of Idi Amin, during which the Church had to define its ministry in the context of military dominance of civic-political life, state-sponsored violence, terror and tyranny, and the ascendance of Islam as the `established' religion. The account reflects on the life of the Church in Lango, an area that bore the brunt of the regime's terror machine, and the issues surrounding the murder of Archbishop Janani Luwum. The Church's identification with the people is visible in its ministry of prayer and the Word, and the subordination of its Protestant identity to a new relationship with the Catholic Church in local expressions of human solidarity. The third era spans 1980-1985, during the second presidency of Obote, when an armed rebellion in `the Luweero Triangle' and the government's counter insurgency measures created a displaced and traumatised population. The account examines the Church's mission and ministry in this milieu, at both the leadership and grassroots levels. The chief work of Church was pastoral. demonstrated in the ministry of catechists and clergy, rendering dysfunctional the Anglican canonical ministerial order of bishop-priest-deacon. The fourth period is the first six years of the Musevveni/ National Resistance Movement government, 1986-1992, during which there was another anti-government rebellion, this time, in the northern and eastern parts of the Uganda. The account focuses on the leadership of Archbishop Yona Okoth, the corporate identity of episcopal leadership and the issues of reconciliation that the Church in Teso had to contend with, and its `pastoral-parental' ministry. The thesis concludes with a reflection on key elements of the ecclesiology of the Church of Uganda arising from the socio-cultural-political context of pre- and postindependence Uganda. It offers a methodological approach to the study of contextual ecclesiology and highlights key elements that may be considered in the development African ecclesiology. The thesis is a contribution to the study of the history of the Church of Uganda in particular and African church history, in general.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
D History General and Old World > D History (General)
Divisions: Afro-Christiana
Depositing User: Geoffrey Obatsa
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2021 07:40
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2021 07:40

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