By Frederick Klaits
This deeply insightful ethnography explores the therapeutic strength of being concerned and intimacy in a small, heavily bonded Apostolic congregation in the course of Botswana's HIV/AIDS pandemic. demise in a Church of lifestyles paints a vibrant photograph of ways individuals of the Baitshepi Church make strenuous efforts to maintain loving relationships amid common disease and loss of life. Over the process long term fieldwork, Frederick Klaits stumbled on Baitshepi's especially maternal ethos and the "spiritual" kinship embodied within the church's nurturing fellowship perform. Klaits exhibits that for Baitshepi individuals, Christian religion is a kind of ethical ardour that counters practices of divination and witchcraft with redemptive hymn making a song, prayer, and using healing ingredients. a web audio annex makes to be had examples of the church participants' preaching and tune.
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Additional resources for Death in a Church of Life: Moral Passion during Botswana's Time of AIDS (The Anthropology of Christianity)
Much of the appeal of Christian movements in southern Africa has long rested on mobilizing collective moral projects for healing physical ailments caused by social relationships gone awry. For example, Jean Comaroff (1985) shows how Zionist healing in South Africa recast the initiation rituals of indigenous polities, whose capacity to protect and strengthen their subjects’ bodies had been destroyed by the colonial state. During the early twentieth century, deacons of the London Missionary Society, the largest of the churches established by British Protestant missionaries in the Bechuanaland Protectorate (now Botswana), would lead communal prayers for rain and accompany congregants’ visits to the sick (Landau 1995:123–27).
Thus, “speaking truth” is a means of placing relationships on a proper footing, long the ideal aim of divination. In order to “speak truth,” people must reﬂect on the impact moral passion in suffering and faith 25 of their words on the sentiments and well-being of others. It was undoubtedly in this spirit that MmaMaipelo asserted to me that the truth is love. In keeping with the accused woman’s distress, Ashforth writes with a keen understanding of “the damage that the fear of witchcraft can cause” (2005:xiv).
As I stated at the outset, the kinds of 30 introduction work involved in diagnosing illness, negotiating sexual relationships, nursing the ill, taking care of survivors, and consoling the bereaved all involve sustaining and (all too often) diminishing love. In order to comprehend the urgency of renewing love in the context of AIDS, as well as the importance of having tumelo in God at a time of widespread suffering, it is necessary to consider the broader range of means by which, and the purposes for which, Batswana attempt to shape one another’s ways of imagining relationships.
Death in a Church of Life: Moral Passion during Botswana's Time of AIDS (The Anthropology of Christianity) by Frederick Klaits