The history of African Independent Churches (AICs) in Southern Africa goes back
for more than a hundred years. They have proliferated geographically and
demographically in Africa more than the mainline churches could ever have
imagined. They have grown to be as widespread and as influential as the African
mainline churches. The reason for this growth is that the AICs are the churches of
African indigenous people. They are launched by Africans from a background of
an African traditional and cultural frame of reference. The most significant reason
is that the founders of these churches are not Westerners, but Africans. Western
missionaries find it difficult to understand the AICs from their perspective. Thus the
Western churches describe the AICs as sectarian, separatist, syncretist, nativitist,
and so on. Nevertheless, some scholars are attempting to view the AICs in
The fact that these two different churches have never acknowledged each other as
true churches is a big challenge for Christian missions in Namibia. Each group has
been viewing and judging the other party through suspicious eyes from their own
perspective, each driving the other to block the channel of reconciliation before the
presence of God. With the aim of solving this problem, this thesis attempts to
answer the following questions about the AICs in Namibia:
• What are the reasons that the AICs in Namibia have been seceded from
• What are the activities in civil society in which the AICs in Namibia are
• Do the AICs engage in any activities which go against the Word of God?
• What causes other churches to be suspicious of the AICs?
• What level of enculturation is inherent to the AICs in Namibia? In other
words, what is the relationship between the liturgies of the AIC and African
traditional religion and African culture?
• What makes the AICs in Namibia regard themselves as a church?
Would it be possible for the AICs and the mainline churches in Namibia to
cooperate in Christian missionary work?
• What is a possible Korean missionary perspective on this particular
This will be dealt throughout this thesis from a Korean missionary missional