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Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae

versión On-line ISSN 2412-4265
versión impresa ISSN 1017-0499


MAJOLA, Yanga LP. The Naming of Independent Churches in the 21st Century: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Charismatic Churches in South Africa. Studia Hist. Ecc. [online]. 2022, vol.48, n.1, pp.1-13. ISSN 2412-4265.

South Africa is a democratic country, wherein every individual has the right to belong to any religious community. Churches in the Bible were not given specific names, but the church's location was used to refer to that church. Mainline churches named their churches using doctrinal convictions, and some used the names of their founders. However, leaders of charismatic churches in South Africa are more creative in naming churches, using names that communicate what the church stands for or a name depicting an expected contribution of the church to the community in which it is based. This article discusses the naming patterns and practices of three church categories as representative examples: the early church (in the Bible), mainline churches, and charismatic churches in South Africa. Using content analysis as a qualitative approach, data were gathered by analysing content from sources such as the Bible, the South African Charter of Religious Rights and Freedoms, and content posted on Facebook and YouTube, while critical discourse analysis and text analysis constituted the analytical framework. The study found that there has been a major shift in the naming practices of churches in the three categories.

Palabras clave : charismatic churches; church names; name trends; South African churches.

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