Liberian Now Blogs

 

African-Christianity-RisingI recently came across a short eight-minute video clip of a documentary film project entitled African Christianity Rising. I found these few minutes of footage quite compelling. In this short video, one gets to experience firsthand the mindset and movement of authentic African worship.

As Christianity begins to shift from the global north to the global south, a very relevant and pertinent question we should be asking ourselves is -what is the African experience of Christianity? I hope this short video clip gives you a little insight into that answer. This is a documentary is one I hope to see in its entirety sometime soon.

To purchase this video click here 

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top-priorities-for-africa-2013To genuinely grasp what the greatest challenges in Africa will be in 2013, this in-depth, ninety-four minute, panel discussion is essential. Below is a summary of what this panel deliberated over.

SUMMARY OF THE PANEL DISCUSSION TAKEN FROM THE BROOKINGS INSTITUTE WEBSITE:

“African countries start the new year with hope and optimism, as many continue to improve governance, deepen economic growth and advance democratic reforms. However, instability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, rising extremism in Mali and Nigeria, and ongoing youth unemployment in much of the continent make the great expectations for Africa seem fragile at times.

On January 9, the Africa Growth Initiative at Brookings hosted a discussion with leading African experts on what the most pressing issues and challenges are for the continent in 2013. The panel included: Professor Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University, who appeared via video conference; Laura Seay, assistant professor at Morehouse College; Steve Radelet, distinguished professor at Georgetown University; and Senior Fellow Mwangi Kimenyi, director of the Africa Growth Initiative at Brookings. Isha Sesay, anchor on CNN International, moderated the discussion.

The event follows the release of the new Forsight Africa report, a collection of short briefs on the major issues for Africa in 2013.”

To watch the full video presentation of this panel discussion please click here:

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Millenium-Development-GoalsIn 2006, I first heard of the MDG’s, through its leading evangelist, the one-of-a-kind rock star, Bono. I then went on to read various books and articles about these lofty goals, which were birthed at the beginning of this new millennium. The more I learned, the more passionate I became about these goals, and in many ways, the MDG’s were the impetus for the eventual formation of Liberia Now.

That same year President Bush invited Bono to give the keynote address at the annual Presidential Prayer Breakfast. This prophetic rock star gave the most poignant sermon I had ever heard on the Biblical morality of these goals. He stated, “these goals are the Beatitudes for a globalized world.” As only Bono could do, he poetically put it like this: “God is in the slums, in the cardboard boxes where the poor play house. God is in the silence of a mother who has infected her child with a virus that will end both their lives. God is in the cries of the ruble of war. God is in the debris of wasted opportunities and lives, and God is with us if we are with them.”

Bono-at-TEDIn the seven years since I first heard that sermon, millions of lives have literally been saved because of these eight monumental goals. The desire is by 2015 to see all eight of these goals reached. Many of the goals are well on their way to being fulfilled, while much work still has to be done in the areas of progress-MDGSchild and maternal health. To hear more about the progress of these beautiful goals and specifically how this is affecting Sub-Saharan Africa, be sure to check out the thirteen-minute video below.

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The-Lazarus-EffectCheck out this powerful thirty-one minute documentary which follows the story of HIV positive people in Africa who in as few as 40 days undergo a remarkable transformation thanks to access to treatment that costs around 40 cents a day. This film was a joint effort of the Red Campaign and HBO and is real life testimony of what the MDG’s are all about. 

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Africa-Straight-UpThe Africa Straight Up documentary begins with this poignant quote from the incomparable TED conference – “The problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue but that they are incomplete.” Africa is a continent who over a billion people call home, containing54 unique countries and where about 2000 languages are spoken. Yet this diverse and distinct land had been stereotyped by much of the Western World. It has become known as the “dark continent”, where only disease, famine, war and corruption are regularly reported on.

African Proverb

If someone really wants to begin to explore this mysterious continent though, Africa Straight Up is as good a place as any to begin. Africa Straight Up tells the under-told

story of everything that is right with Africa. It debunks the singular story of Africa as a land of all pain and suffering and nohope. It takes a person on the first step of a journey to truly begin to comprehend this amazingly assorted continent that is full of both joy and pain, love and hate, hope and despair. It is another side of the story of Africa that needs to be heard.

africa_infographic_bigIn the months to come, in this space called Understanding Africa, my desire is to discover more about this heterogeneous continent. I will explore the plethora of quality media, prose and poetry that helps to illuminate the birthplace of humanity and the most exciting continent of the twenty-first century. I hope you will join me on this African adventure.

A fellow learner,

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