Welcoming strangers! The responses of African Pentecostal Churches in London to Europe’s Migration and Refugee Crisis

Babatunde Adedibu

Abstract


The twenty-first century heralded a new phase in global migration trends which have led to the hyper diversities of cultures, ethnicities, social and religious idiosyncrasies in these contexts. The various economic, political, social and religious crises in the Middle East, North Africa and Africa that have taken place in the last sixty years (1960-2016) have contributed significantly to mass migration from these continents to Europe and America.  However, it is pertinent to state that migration is not only to the West but multi-directional as many migrate within nations and continents in search of economic opportunities, safety and religious freedom. This development has generated diverse responses from various governments, organisations and individuals as well as non-governmental agencies with respect to how to handle the migration crisis in these contexts. Despite the declining fortunes of Christianity in the West particularly England, the Church of England, Methodist, Catholic Churches and a host of others have lent their voices to giving the migration crisis a human face by the European governments. Nevertheless, the burgeoning stream of the Christian tradition in Britain which is the African Pentecostalism seems indifferent to Europe’s migration crisis. Ironically, the African Pentecostal churches’ proliferation is one direct gain of migration to Britain as the churches welcome their kith and kin from Africa and Africans that travel through North Africa to Europe. This paper aims to utilise the interpretative framework of Luke 10: 29 to explore the non-response of African Pentecostal churches in London to Europe’s migration crisis. Likewise, this paper examines the biblical motif of who is thy neighbour and its implications in intercultural engagement of these churches.


Keywords


Migration crisis, African Pentecostal churches, London, Refugees, Migrants

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7832/44-3-173

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ISSN 2312-878X(online); ISSN 0256-9507 (print)

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