Professor Lamin Sanneh 1942-2019
Professor Lamin Sanneh 1942-2019 was a very good friend to the International Fellowship of Mission Theologians who were the founders of the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies, the Akrofi-Kristaller Memorial Centre in Ghana, the Institute for Asian Church and Culture in the Philippines and the Oxford Centre for Religion and Public Life.
He wrote of two key leaders: ” Vinay Samuel of India and Wayan Mastra of Indonesia are not just voices domesticated by their respective cultures, two forces dissipated in their own vacuum, but a dynamic impetus of the global theological current.” They raised, he said, the whole level of social context and identity from the flatbed of ethnocentric value judgement to the high ground of global critical historical consciousness.
His book “Translating the Message” remains a major work on the whole question of the engagement of the Gospel and Culture. He demonstrates the influence that Christian translations of Scriptures and catechisms into African languages had on cultural self-understanding, social awakening, religious renewal, reciprocity in mission, process, and shows that mission and translation were and continue to be integral parts of cultural renewal in the face of the relentless onslaught of imperialism in its classic and contemporary forms.
Requiescat in pace et resurgat in gloria (Rest in peace and rise in glory).
Author: Dr Chris Sugden
Originally published: Oxford Centre for Religion and Public Life