Original Research - Special Collection: Christian Leadership

Christian leadership in a South African township community: A reflection on nepotism and its impact on society

Kasebwe T.L. Kabongo
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 76, No 2 | a5842 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v76i2.5842 | © 2020 Kasebwe T.L. Kabongo | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 October 2019 | Published: 15 April 2020

About the author(s)

Kasebwe T.L. Kabongo, Department of Religion Studies and Missiology, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa


The author reflects on the reality of nepotism in Christian leadership as he has observed in the township of Soshanguve and many other African poverty-stricken communities he has lived in. The leadership of churches in those areas seems to run in the family. This model tends to have a disempowering effect on the other church members in terms of taking responsibility or initiating projects that could expand the impact of the church beyond the borders of its walls. This article recognises the positive impact of nepotism, but it mostly stresses on the negative impact of nepotism on the democratisation of power in the church and society. It uses music, a critical vehicle of knowledge acquisition in Africa, to stress upon the fact that Christian leaders should be equipped to participate in the common good, help in the empowerment of ordinary people around them, starting with their members and be altruistic, like Jesus, and work beyond the boundaries of their families.


Democratisation; Inclusive; Music; Nepotism; Prophetic


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