Journey to the Center of Africa: First Impressions

Journey to the Center of Africa:  First Impressions (pdf) by Peter W. Dunn

In 1998, I went on my first teaching expedition to Central African Republic. I explain how it was that God led me to go to Africa despite my fears. During that trip I met some of the people that we still work with today: Moussa Bongoyok, who was a young visiting professor; Elisee Ouoba and Charles Bafinamene, who were 4th year students in my Acts of the Apostles course. That year I traveled for the first and only time deep into the forest that lies on the border of Central African Republic and Congo Brazzaville, the home of the Aka pygmies, and visited my friend Dan Duke who was consultant to the SIL translation project there. It was a glimpse of both the hardship and the beauty, the simplicity and complexity of village life in the forest. I visited the pygmies and their first generation church and even had the privilege to teach them. This is an experience that few have had and it has taught me a lot of about wealth and poverty and it has left a mark too on my scholarly work. Finally, I record some anecdotes that I found fascinating and some reflexions about Africa.

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