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My Rock, My Shield, My Stronghold And My Refuge

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Chapter Summary

This chapter talks about a Christianisme béninois which lies as a sub-stratum across the denominations, constructed to meet local needs, and which is a reflection of the society that has produced it. It examines the perception of Benin society in the Churches, their understanding of the Church as a sacred and secure space within this fragile society, allowing for the creation of new communities or quasi-communities, the development of adapted theologies, rites and rituals that seek to respond to the needs of their adherents. Although the leadership of all the Churches has changed in the years since independence and is now almost entirely African, if not always Béninois, the perception of Danxomε-Benin at this level often bears a striking resemblance to that of the early travellers and missionaries. Social fissures reach into the most intimate social spaces, most notably the family. This theme reoccurs frequently in the Churches.

Keywords: Benin society; Christianisme béninois; Churches; Danxomε; social fissures



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