African Zionism


African Zionism

African Zionism is the predominant religion of rural areas in Swaziland and thirty percent of Swazis consider themselves Zionist. It is also common among Zulus in South Africa. It is a combination of Christianity and indigenous belief systems. [http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2006/71327.htm.]

History

The Zionist churches of southern Africa were founded by Pl le Roux, an Afrikanerfaith healer. [http://www.bethel.edu/~letnie/AfricanChristianity/SSAZionism.html] He was a former member of the Dutch Reformed Church who joined John Alexander Dowie's Christian Catholic Apostolic Church based in Zion, Illinois. In Africa branches of this church were referred to as the Zionist Apostolic Church. In 1908 Daniel Nkonyane became the leader of the church. By the 1920s the church in Africa was entirely separated from its American version. In South Africa churches were established at Wakkerstroom and Charlestown on the Transvaal-Natal border.

Practices

African Zionism blends traditional African beliefs with faith-healing and water baptism. Some members wear white robes and carry staffs. [Adrian Hastings, The Church in Africa: 1450-1950. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994 pp. 499-505, 520-1, 537-8. Also Hennie Pretorius and Lizo Jafta, "A Branch Springs Out: African Initiated Churches" in Christianity in South Africa, edited by Richard Elphick and Rodney Davenport. Berkeley & Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1997 pp. 216-224.]

References


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