Issue 79 African Apostles: Black Evangelists in Africa

What's inside

Bishop Before His Time

Samuel Ajayi Crowther’s consecration as the first African Anglican bishop looked like a great leap forward for the church. But the talented ex-slave collided with the roadblock of racism

Ted Olsen

Anatomy of an Explosion

It’s an indelible image: the white missionary venturing into deepset Africa. But the real story is what happened when African converts relayed the gospel message in their own words.

The Prospect Terrified Me

Apolo Kivebulaya, a convert from Islam, bravely preached to witch doctors, hostile chieftains, and Pygmy tribes.

Steven Gertz

A Soul of Fire

William Wade Harris - a Liberian activist - left an unsuccessful local ministry to trail across the Ivory Coast. In 18 months, he baptized 100,000 converts.

Elizabeth Isichei

Pioneer of Self-Euthanizing Missions

To Henry Venn, a mission’s only purpose was to render itself unnecessary.

Ted Olsen

The Brilliant Career of Joseph Kiwanuka

Over the protests of a divided church, the scholarly Ugandan priest became the first African Catholic bishop. Just three years after his death, 12 more Africans would follow in his footsteps.

Sarah E. Dahl

Holy Johnson and the Ethiopian Church

Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands unto God, said the Psalm. Yet racism in the mission churches clouded that vision. James Johnson (1836-1917) offered a solution.

Ted Olsen

African Family Values

Harris was one of several indigenous Christian leaders who took an open approach to polygamy. They cited social conditions and biblical support.

Elizabeth Isichei

A Hunger For Holiness

East Africa’s second generation Christians faced that age-old spiritual problem — dullness of hearts. Simeon Nsibambi’s message of a victorious life sparked a revival that continues today.

Mark Shaw

The People’s Prophet

Simon Kimbangu’s brief but powerful ministry inspired faith in Central Africans and fear in white authorities. Imprisoned for stirring up the Congolese people, Kimbangu became the catalyst for Africa’s largest independent church.

Steve Rabey

Supernatural Faith

Known for their fidelity to prayer and confrontation with the spirits of indigenous religion, West Africa’s Aladura churches grew from the radical faith of a group of visionary leaders.

Elizabeth Isichei and Robert Schirmer

A Transatlantic Alliance

Two South Africans changed their country by linking their church with an African American church

Joan Millard

A Leopard Among the Bannas

Mahay Choramo faced down hardship and violent opposition to the murderous nomads of Ethiopia’s southern frontier.

Aaron Belz

The African Apostles: Did You Know?

The rapidity of Africa’s twentieth-century baptism was stunning. There’s no better place to see the future of the global church.

Chris Armstrong and Collin Hansen

Christian History Timeline: African Apostles

Chronology of Christianity in Africa.

the Editors

Resources: Go Tell It!

Many are telling the continuing story of the African church. Here are some of the best renditions.

Collin Hansen and Chris Armstrong
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