An Unpredictable Gospel: American Evangelicals and World Christianity, 1812-1920

By Jay Riley Case | Go to book overview
Save to active project

4
An Appalachian Revivalist in Queen
Victoria’s Colonies

The missionary engagement with Karen Christianity produced particular kinds of paradoxes of power, culture, and influence. Missionaries saw their evangelistic goals, if not their educational goals, coming to fruition more fully when Karen evangelists operated without their direct supervision. These poorly educated but democratized evangelists translated Christianity into Karen culture while simultaneously undermining missionary conceptions of civilization. By bringing their missionary influence to Burma, Baptists found themselves influenced by Karen Christianity, as they developed a native-ministry ideology that guided their vision to establish black colleges in the American south.

Missionary paradoxes appeared again in other regions of the world where American evangelical missionaries operated, but the specific issues and situations changed. In South Africa in 1866, a revival that started among Mfengu and Xhosa Christians played a key role in reconfiguring the religious landscape of South Africa. A new movement of world Christianity gained vitality, bringing changes to Xhosa religion while reinforcing aspects of its traditional religious culture. Thanks to the evangelistic cooperation between an Mfengu named Charles Pamla and a visiting evangelist from the United States named William Taylor, the revival convinced British missionaries that they should ordain black Africans as ministers, temporarily challenging the conceptions of race and civilization emerging in the colony. This ordination of black Africans laid the foundation for independent black Christian movements such as Ethiopianism that emerged at the end of the century when white Christians in South Africa further restricted black leadership opportunities.

The revival of 1866 also affected American evangelicalism. It redirected William Taylor from itinerant evangelism into the missionary movement, where Taylor would emerge as the most popular American Methodist missionary of the late nineteenth century. Although the South African revival held implications for conceptions of race and civilization, it did not lead Taylor to articulate a new racial ideology, as Karen Christianity did within the Baptist program in Burma.

-103-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
An Unpredictable Gospel: American Evangelicals and World Christianity, 1812-1920
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 311

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?