An investigation of secularization trends in contextualization of christianity in Murang’a county, Kenya .
Sikuku, Ignatius Wafula
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The purpose of this study is to shed light on emerging issues on secularization so as to inform further on how those issues had affected contextualization of Christianity. The study focused on 10 different churches in Murang’a County. It was guided by the following objectives: to show the extent of secularization trends in contextualization of Christianity in Murang’a County, to identify the role of Christians in dealing with secularization trends in contextualization of Christianity, identify challenges experienced by Christians in dealing with secularization trends in contextualization of Christianity and to give solutions to challenges experienced by Christians in dealing with secularization trends in contextualization of Christianity. Study was guided by functionalist theory by Emile Durkheim (1858-1917) and functional substitution theory by Arbuckle (1990). The target population was elderly members of the church, church leaders, academicians and youths from the selected churches. Descriptive survey research design, random and purposive sampling methods were used; Questionnaire, interview and observation research instruments were also utilized to collect data. Data was analyzed using explanatory and confirmatory methods. The findings revealed that the secularization trends in contextualization of Christianity are decline of religious authority, overuse of media and technology, increased immorality, loss of Christian social control and Christianity becoming shallow. The study revealed that Christians have roles of engaging church parties in making appropriate church programs, cooperating while addressing the effects of secularization, developing strategies for contextualization of Christianity, producing more literature on the problem and Christian politicians making enactments for helping the church regain its lost image. Improper contextualization of Christianity, cultural interference, confusion on the correct response, criticism, lack of moral guidance and confidence are the challenges experienced by Christians while dealing with secularization trends in contextualization of Christianity. The solution to the challenges are reading the word of God, interpreting the word of God correctly, praying, organizing and holding seminars and lastly advising one another on the correct response to effects of secularization trends in contextualization of Christianity.