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The Rebirth of African Orthodoxy: Return to Foundations

The Rebirth of African Orthodoxy: Return to Foundations

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Classic African Christian teaching in the patristic period (100-750 AD) preceded modern colonialism by over a thousand years. Many young African women and men are now reexamining these lost roots. They are hungry for accurate information on their brilliant Christian ancestors.
Now we have accessible an abundance of powerful primary texts from early Africa as biblical passages were viewed by Cyprian, Origen, Tertullian, and Clement, as well as the leading Patriarchs Dionysius, Peter, Alexander, Athanasius, and Augustine—all Africans, born on African soil. Together they form a huge collection of profound reflections and homilies on scripture. Virtually every verse of scripture has been examined by Africans writing earlier than AD 750. The observations, debates, musings, and deliberations of early African Christian minds may now be examined through the whole range of scripture and taught to a newly receptive African audience. The high intellectual quality of these African writers is evident.
African orthodoxy is not different in basic Christian teaching from global orthodoxy, but it is significantly rooted in and shaped out of home-grown African experience. African orthodoxy today is the same faith that was confessed by Athanasius and Augustine seventeen centuries ago.

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