Association for Free Research and International Cooperation

Religious promiscuity very prevalent among African youth

It has become a common place in today’s world to hear of things like religious promiscuity or the migration of people from one church to another. This phenomenon has been identified by some pundits to be very prevalent or common among African Youths. The emergence of new and charismatic churches on the Continent and their dogma seems to be attracting vibrant and young African youths to these diverse churches. However, what has caused this upsurge in prosperity churches and why the youths remain at the mercy of these churches is what has to be uncovered.

Religious promiscuity can be defined in simple terms as the act of moving from one Church or denomination to another for various reasons. In the contemporary society especially in a nation like Nigeria, a significant number of Youths or adolescents have become adherent to prosperity teachings advocated by the so called pastors of the revived churches. This has forced them to indiscriminately migrate from conventional Churches to a more charismatic one.

According to a survey conducted in Nigeria in 2016, many young Africans have made a drastic move from traditional churches like the Roman Catholic Church, Baptist and Presbyterian churches to other churches that have sprung up over the years. This survey centered on the Baptist church revealed that this migration is characterized by the lack of satisfaction these youths get from their churches. The solemnity of the church has favoured migration from what can be termed conservative churches to a more charismatic church, most of these youths also feel sidelined in the day to day running of their local churches and thus embrace renewal denominations where they can fully participate in church activities  among other things.


Unlike in the past where people went to church to uplift their spirituality by gaining a wider understanding of the gospel, the case is different today. Many Christians and mostly youth now go to church to seek solutions to their diverse ‘’prosperity problems’’. Reacting to this phenomenon a youth counselor who spoke on condition of anonymity said the primary reason why young Africans indulge in religious promiscuity is due to ignorance, and laziness. People are looking for easy way out of life and what comes with it. So they get carried away by doctrines which only tell them what they want to hear.

He added that out of frustration, African youths embrace revival churches with the hope to finding concrete solutions to their worries. For example in the 21st century, Youths who seem to be socially defeated seek refuge in ‘’Miracle churches’’. The quest to live happily, meet life partners (husband, wife), acquire a job, has exposed idle African youth to follow these churches and their dogma about prosperity.

According to one political pundit, the significant increase in church migration or religious promiscuity can largely be attributed to the failure by most African government in solving the countless problems of youths. Many youth African feel isolation from decision making bodies of their nations, high unemployment among youths etc. cause them to seek refuge in God.

From another point of view, the good thing about a Christian inclined youth or society is that it impacts good morals in the society as a result of good Christian and moral values. Vices like corruption, nepotism, tribalism, Graft, negligence can easily be contained.  Notwithstanding, in as much as some youths have sought refuge in Churches, these same churches have to a lesser extend brained washed these youths or adolescents into believing that prayer without hard work pays bountifully.  Some religions restrict Christian from seeking medical attention. In 2017, a renowned Evangelical Christian Minister Gloria Copeland preached against Flu vaccination, urging faithful to pray and be safe. She argued that Jesus Christ was protected from Flu and so are his followers.

Pastors preach prosperity gospel, thereby making the youths to believe that they can become economically viable by going to church and praying to God. Most of them become Lazy and live at the mercy of their pastors believing in ‘’MANNERS FROM HEAVEN’’.

In a nutshell, the African continent and the world at large would be a better place if we embrace Christianity and also inculcate it into our political life i.e. (Governance). This will positively spur development at every level.

AFRIC Editorial Article.

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