On 8th April, 2015, I attended a seminar on the Dictionary of African Christian Biography (DACB) at Justo Mwale University in Lusaka. The seminar was facilitated by the Director of the project (DACB) Professor Jonathan Bonk from Canada. The attendees were a variety of religious leaders from different Christian denominations, representatives of organisations, university Professors and students. The focus was mainly to present the Dictionary of African Christian Biography.
This dictionary, which is an international online database, is a biography of African Christian leaders (clergy, catechist and lay people) and Christians who have contributed to the laying of the Christian foundation, shaped the character and propagated for its growth in Africa. And the reason for doing this is to “advance a scholarly understanding of African Christianity” which in the paraphrased words of Professor Bonk is scarcely available in many universities in Africa but more especially in the western world.
The biographies of these African Christians are categorised according to their country of origin. And according to the database presentation of Zambia, few stories of those committed Christians were reflected and moreover little about Catholic African Christians has been written. The Professor appealed to the Catholic community that more should be written about those people who significantly participated in the evangelisation of Christianity in Zambia. For me the appear was sincere and besides the Catholic Church has been a mainline Christian church in Zambia since 1891; during this epoch there have been significant figures who have enhanced the expansion of Catholicism. Such are the people the seminar encouraged that we write about them.
We concluded our seminar with wonderful sneaks and though the group of attendees was small (at least 20), the presentation and participation from the audience created an enthralling intellectual discursive atmosphere.
For those who would like to contribute to this biography or want more information; you can visit: www.DACB.org
It is available in Français, Português and Kiswahili.