IMPACT OF EGGON CULTURAL PRACTICES ON EGGON CHRISTIANS IN NASARAWA STATE, NIGERIA


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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Title Page
Abstract
Table of Contents
Abbreviations

CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION
1.1       Background to the Study
1.2       Statement of the Problem
1.3       Objectives of the Study
1.4       Research Questions
1.5       Research Hypotheses
1.6       Significance of the Study
1.7       Scope of the Study

CHAPTER 2: REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
2.1       Introduction
2.2       The Advent of Christianity in Eggon Land
2.3       Definition of Culture
2.4       Theories of Culture
2.4.1    Evolutionary Theory
2.4.2    Historical Particularism Theory
2.4.3    Ruth Benedict‟s Theory
2.4.4    Margaret Mead‟s Theory
2.5       Elements of Eggon Culture in Nasarawa State
2.5.1    Dominant attitude of man over a woman
2.5.2    Power of negative names given to children
2.5.3    Bride price and marriage
2.5.4    The concept of inheritance and traditional treatment of orphans and widows
2.5.5    Polygamy
2.5.6    Cultural revival
2.5.7    Alcoholism
2.5.8    Witchcraft
2.5.9    Infertility
2.5.10  Death and burial
2.5.11  Magic and medicinal practices
2.5.12  The Dilemma of Syncretism
2.5.13  Existence of one Supreme God
2.5.14  The concept of worship
2.5.15  The mystery of evil
2.5.16  God‟s distance from man
2.5.17  Life after death
2.5.18  Societal values
2.5.19  Methods of communication
2.6       Empirical Studies
2.7       Summary

CHAPTER 3: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
3.1       Introduction
3.2       Research Design
3.3       Population of the Study
3.4       Sample and Sampling Procedure
3.5       Instrumentation
3.6       Validity of the Instruments
3.7       Pilot Study
3.8       Reliability of the Instruments
3.9       Procedure for the Data Collection
3.10     Method of Data Analysis

CHAPTER 4: DATA PRESENTATION, ANALYSIS, INTERPRETATION, FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION OF RESULTS
4.1       Introduction
4.2       Bio-data Information
4.3       Analysis of Research Questions using Mean Statistics
4.4       Testing of Hypotheses
4.5       Major Findings
4.6       Discussion of Results

CHAPTER 5: SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
5.1       Summary
5.2       Conclusions
5.3       Recommendations
5.4       Suggestions for Further Study
            References
            Appendices



ABSTRACT

Since the advent of Christianity in Eggon land, the church has been growing in leaps and bounds. However, there is cultural contrasts between Christianity and the African Traditional Religion (ATR). Most followers of ATR who accepted Christianity are at threshold, that is, neither here nor there and hence they live a double life. This study set out to identify the impact of Eggon cultural practices on Eggon Christians in Nasarawa State, Nigeria. To do this, three objectives were formulated. They are: find out the opinions of rural and urban Christians on the negative impact of Eggon cultural practices on Eggon Christians; examine the views of the members of the various church denominations on the positive impact of Eggon cultural practices on Eggon Christians, and; examine the opinions of male and female Christians on whether some Eggon Christians are still engaged in their cultural practices despite their conversion to Christianity in Nasarawa State, Nigeria.

A survey research design was adopted for this study with a population of 200,000 in the state. A form of questionnaire divided into two parts with close-ended interview capable of identifying the impact of Eggon cultural practices on Eggon Christians in Nasarawa State was designed and distributed to 800 respondents. Descriptive data analysis was adopted using means, t-test and one-way Anova.

The major findings of the study are: there is a significant difference between the opinions of rural and urban respondents with regards to the negative impact of Eggon cultural practices on Eggon Christians in Nasarawa State, Nigeria. This is because some Eggon Christians are still being negatively influenced by their culture since they do resort to cultural means if found with issues of witchcraft, infertility, and are being syncretic; there is a significant difference in the views of the members of the various church denominations with regards to the positive impact of Eggon cultural practices on Eggon Christians in Nasarawa State, Nigeria. This is because they also have some positive cultural practices that should be upheld and promoted such as societal values: obedience, hard work and many others; and there is a significant difference in the opinions of male and female Christians on whether some Eggon Christians are still engaged in their cultural practices despite their conversion to Christianity in Nasarawa State, Nigeria.


Conclusively, most Eggon Christians are still being negatively influenced by their culture; Eggon culture also has some positive aspects which influenced their Christians life; and some Eggon Christians are still engaged in their cultural practices despite their conversion to Christianity.

From these findings, the following recommendations were made: efforts by the clergy men, ministers and church elders should be intensified towards educating Eggon Christians on the need to discard their negative cultural practices. This can be achieved through sound teaching, organizing seminars and educative Christian programmes in towns and villages where they reside; efforts should be intensified by clergy men, ministers and church elders on the need for all Eggon Christians to strongly uphold the positive aspects of their culture. This can be done through sensitization on Christian literature, newsletters and tracts in Eggon language. This will help them to remain faithfully to one religion and avoid serving two masters.





CHAPTER 1

INTRODUCTION

1.1              Background to the Study


Christianity came to Nasarawa State around 1920 through South African and Dutch Missionaries. They did not find it easy with the people of the state because the religion was seen as foreign and contrary to the practices of their culture. Among the early ethnic groups that accepted Christianity in Nasarawa State from the missionaries were the Eggon people. Both missionaries and early converts experienced stiff opposition and persecution in an attempt to prevent its acceptability and spread in Eggon land by both community leaders and parents of the converts (Emmanuel, 2006).

The missionaries did not relent in spreading the gospel despite the strong opposition they encountered. They started planting churches anywhere they reached and got converts. Among the denominations that were embraced by the people of Eggon during the mission works were: Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA), Evangelical Reformed Church of Christ (ERCC), Baptist Church and Roman Catholic Church. These early churches planted by the missionaries were warmly embraced by the people of Eggon because they adopted the principles of establishing schools for free education, building of hospitals and provision of free medication, clothes and food to their converts. Similarly, they began to preach against killing of twins, casting away of people suffering from leprosy, chicken pox, small pox and a host of other diseases. That apart, the missionaries taught the converts virtues such as faithfulness, honesty, purity, peace, love, unity, hard work, justice, forgiveness, obedience, meekness, humility, impartiality, hospitality and spirit of sharing and urged them to practice them. In view of that, adherents of Christianity in Eggon land were supposed to live in accordance with these virtues so as to make a difference with those who were yet to accept Christ. This is because the virtues promote practical Christian living and holistic service to....

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