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Corporate Personality in Traditional Igbo Society and the Sacrament of Reconciliation


Austin Echema

Contemporary studies in both anthropology and sociology reveal that rites develop and have meaning within the life of particular communities and their culture. Rites are thus human creations, though in a unique way. When rites and the words that go with them are no longer affecting choices about the crucial issues of life, they gradually lose their status; they are revised or even rejected. This appears to be the fate of the sacrament of reconciliation today. Although so central in the mission of Jesus that it became a sacrament in his Church, reconciliation has fallen into disuse at a time when most needed. This book contends that the importation of cultural elements, notions, signs and symbols from a different cultural setting to another is responsible for the crisis in the present practice of confession among the Igbo Christians.

« øthe book! both underscores the problems in a revelatory sort of way and indicates the great potential of a Reconciliation ceremony that would be open to the actual social context, whether in Igboland, Africa, Europe, Australia or anywhere. The book is well researched, planned and written.» (Martin Wilson, Nelen Yubu)>