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Jeremy Rich

religious and educational leader, was born to a family of chiefs in the town of Rusengo in eastern Burundi. The names and occupations of his parents are not known. He attended primary school in Rusengo from 1927 to 1933 and completed his secondary education at the Mugera seminary from 1933 to 1939. Barakana then decided to complete his theological training to become a Roman Catholic priest. He underwent training at the seminary in Nyakibanda from 1939 to 1947 and was ordained on 25 July 1947. Soon afterward, he went to the Vatican to study for a doctorate in canon law, which he received in 1950. Barakana thus became the first Burundian to ever receive a doctorate. Barakana decided to join the Jesuit Catholic religious order and officially became a member of this order on 20 May 1953 at Djuma in the Democratic Republic of the Congo ...

Article

Jennifer R. Lyons

African Americans identify strongly with the Exodus narrative. The prominent black author James Baldwin wrote in Commentary magazine, “The Negro identifies himself almost wholly with the Jews … the more devout Negro considers that he is a Jew, in bondage to a hard taskmaster and waiting for Moses to lead him out of Egypt.” In response to social, economic, and political oppression following Reconstruction, African Americans such as William S. Crowdy, William Henry Plummer, and Rabbi Wentworth A. Matthew altered their Christian religious affiliation and embraced Judaism instead Theirs was a brand of Judaism quite different and sometimes opposed to the religious practices of European Jewish immigrants These men and their followers turned toward Judaism as a means by which to reject the religious tradition of the largely Christian white populace who had not only enslaved them but also subjugated them to inferior positions following the Civil ...

Article

Heike Becker

the first Herero convert to Christianity, a translator, a teacher, and a midwife, was born in September 1837 as the daughter of Kazahendike and his wife Kariaavihe in Hereroland in what is today central Namibia. Her family was among those Herero who were impoverished and displaced by the conflicts that were ravaging central Namibia in the 1840s (especially those between Jan Jonker Afrikaner and Tjimuhua) and who subsequently gravitated toward the early missions in search of shelter and livelihood. Urieta Kazahendike was about ten or twelve years old when she came to live with German-born missionary Carl Hugo Hahn and his English wife Emma, née Hone, who had arrived in Namibia in 1844. Kazahendike lived with the Hahns first at Otjikango, about 70 kilometers north of Windhoek, which the missionaries called “New Barmen.” In 1855 she followed the Hahn family to Otjimbingwe to the west of Otjikango From ...

Article

James Bartholomew

Minority religious or racial groups in a country or region have often experienced greater difficulty than the majority in cultivating natural knowledge and receiving recognition for their work. Sometimes, as with Huguenots in seventeenth-century France, Quakers in eighteenth-century England, Jews in nineteenth-century Germany, and Asians in twentieth-century America, minorities have done well despite, and in different measures because of, prejudice that allowed them to develop strengths favorable for scientific work. Though not a minority in the general population, women have been severely underrepresented in the sciences owing to a spectrum of beliefs now unsustainable in the Western world: that women have no capacity for abstract thought, cannot raise children while performing other exacting jobs, cannot work outside the home without damaging it, and so on (See Women in Science).

The history of the position and opportunities of minorities in Europe and the United States has not tended uniformly toward improvement ...

Article

Jeremy Rich

Congolese warlord and religious leader, was born on 29 August 1964 under the name Frédéric Bitsamou in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo. Details about his early life are extremely difficult to obtain. Etanislas Ngodi, author of the most detailed study of Ntoumi’s Nsilulu religious and political movement as of 2009 noted that he so frightened informants in Brazzaville that they refused to provide much concrete information about his family According to some sources Ntoumi was the eldest of eight children He completed his studies at the primary level he never attended middle school nor graduated from secondary school Religious pamphlets and the Bible were his favorite reading materials One individual close to Ntoumi noted It was prayer that counted for him most of all It didn t mean he wasn t intelligent at school On the contrary everyone who knew him thought he was brilliant Certainly his lack of ...

Article

Brian H. Biffle

second king of the Barghwata people and self-proclaimed prophet. The Barghwata peoples of Tamasna, located on the Atlantic coast of Morocco, comprised one of several Berber communities in southern and central Morocco. These small, localized kingdoms existed among numerous independent Berber peoples who lived in prestate political communities. The Berber population was diverse and included pastoralists, peasants, and camel-herding nomads. The Berbers were known under several names, including Masmuda, Sanhaja, and Zenata. The Barghwata established their kingdom in the mid-eighth century after participating in the Kharidit insurrection of Maisara. The Barghwata remained under the rule of the descendants of Salih ibn Tarif until the middle of the eleventh century when they were conquered by the Almoravids.

Salih ibn Tarif succeeded his father Tarif ibn Shamaʾun ibn Yaʾkub ibn Ishak to become the second king of the Barghwata His reign coincided with that of the caliphate of the Ummayad Hisham ibn ...

Article

Joel Cabrita

independent churchman and founder of the Zulu church Ibandla lamaNazaretha (Church of the Nazaretha, was born in Ntambamhlophe, in the district of Chief Langalibalele of the amaHlubi, in the Drakensberg region of Natal, South Africa, around 1870. Shembe’s parents had close ties to the Hlubi royal family. His father, Mayekisa, was a headman of Langalibalele, and his mother, Sitheya Hadebe, was daughter of Mlindi, who was a close relative of Langalibalele. Shembe was named Mdliwamfa, although he later changed his name to Isaiah at his Christian baptism.

Displaced by the deposal of Chief Langabilalele in 1873 1874 the family left the Ntambamhlophe area when Shembe was a child and moved to the nearby Free State province Shembe s father Mayekisa settled the family as labor tenants upon the farm of Afrikaaner Coenraad Grabe Unlike many of his Zulu Christian contemporaries Shembe did not attend school spending his childhood working upon ...

Article

Coptic patriarch (pope) of Alexandria, was born Nazir Gayed on 3 August 1923 in the important Coptic center of Assiyut. He was educated in various parts of Egypt and graduated from Cairo University in 1943. As an undergraduate he gained degrees in history, literature, and theology and was a student of archaeology and classical Arabic. In spite of the enormous demands of high office, he should be counted among the elite quartet of leading theologians in the Egyptian Church.

Nazir Gayed experienced a spiritual call to the monastic life and entered the Monastery of the Syrians in the Western Desert in July 1954. As Father Antonious El-Souriani, he received a further vocation to the life of a hermit and between 1954 and 1962 lived alone in a desert cave for extended periods.

On Sunday 31 October 1971 an altar ballot took place in Cairo and a small ...

Article

Robert Fay

The Swahili people number approximately 1,320,000, inhabiting a string of small settlements along the East African coast from Mogadishu in the north to Mozambique in the south, spanning approximately 1,800 km (about 1,118 mi). They are believed to have descended from Bantu-speaking agriculturalists who lived in an area reaching roughly from Kenya’s Tana River in modern Kenya to the Webi Shebelle region of Somalia. Although they had long supplemented their farming with fishing, it is believed that around 500 c.e.. these people began to trade and migrate along the coast. Over the next three centuries migrant groups moved south by ship, establishing settlements both on the coast and on adjacent islands. These independent polities were linked by trade as well as by a common culture and language, Swahili From an early date merchants from the Arab peninsula Persia and India settled among and intermarried with the ...