Anvil journal of theology and mission
Mission after George Floyd: on white supremacy, colonialism and world Christianity
by Harvey Kwiyani
This essay reflects my attempts to make sense of the possibilities of a missiology that reflects the current world Christianity in which only around a third of Christians are white westerners – in a world where both colonialism and white supremacy (which have for centuries been the two clutches on which mission stood) have become difficult to justify.
I spent the years between 2007 and 2013 in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul in Minnesota, USA. I went to seminary in Saint Paul but I lived right on the border between the two cities. Starting in the summer of 2009, I led a church plant in Saint Paul. Yes, I was too naive to understand the significance of race on American Christianity. The very people who commissioned me to plant the church discouraged people from helping me, saying, “How can you follow a black immigrant African international student?” Nevertheless, with the passage of time, I was lucky enough to lead a sizeable congregation with a significant group of young people from Minneapolis. Between 2009 and 2013, I spent a great deal of time in South Minneapolis, around the area where George Floyd was killed. Since 25 May 2020, when he was killed, I have had countless conversations with my friends in Minneapolis and Saint Paul – some of whom knew George Floyd – as they try to figure out how to be good followers of Christ in the chaos that has seized many American cities. Consequently, the Black Lives Matter phenomenon is something that, for me, feels personal.
Whether in America, in Britain, or in Germany, I have seen things that make me want to remind the world that non-white people are people too, and that black bodies are not expendable. From the six police stops that I survived in Saint Paul to the racism that I experienced among my Christian friends in Minneapolis – long before Donald Trump’s dog whistle revealed the hollow of American Evangelicalism and emboldened his white supremacist base to hijack US politics – I have been left wondering if there is hope for black and brown people in the world. Even more, I have struggled with this because, from where I stand, Christianity (and by this, I mean not all Christians but enough of them to justify a generalisation) seems to be entirely complicit in this sin of racism. Christianity has, for the past 600 years, trafficked in racism and preached – in deed, but also in word – the supremacy of the white race over all the others.  In doing so, Christianity became a servant of the white race. Even today, when white Christians form less than a third of world Christians, Christianity still privileges whiteness, and many white Christians still struggle to think any non-white Christian is their equal. The message of the church does not openly sanction this discrimination of non-white peoples, but most white Christians, doing their day-to-day jobs, continue to oppress black and brown people because, of course, they have been conditioned to privilege whiteness – and the gospel of Christ fails to adequately challenge them to think otherwise. It is hard to imagine world Christianity without white supremacy. The folly of this imperial Christianity that wants to evangelise the marginalised and yet keep them oppressed and confined to the margins as second-class Christians is beyond comprehension. Derek Chauvin nonchalantly keeping his knee on George Floyd’s neck is symbolic of the many centuries of white (Christian) oppression of Native Americans, Latin Americans, Africans, Indians and many other peoples, not only in America but also in the UK, Germany, China, Australia and many other countries in the world. (I have, so far, successfully resisted finding out which churches Chauvin and his friends attend – ignorance, in this manner, is bliss.)
The spread of Christianity from Europe to other parts of the world, starting in the fifteenth century and reaching its climax in the second half of the twentieth, was greatly enhanced by racist European ideologies – white people understood themselves to be better than everyone else – and theologies – God has destined them to dominate, civilise and Christianise the rest of the world, and the rest of the races were supposed to help Europeans do this, for their own good. Stephen Neill adds that, “The ideas of conquest and of conversion lay side by side in the consciousness of the Christians of the Western world.”  The ideology that, in the nineteenth century, became known as manifest destiny – grounded, essentially, in white supremacy, and stating that Europeans had been destined by God to dominate, civilise and Christianise the world – had been extensively used in Latin America right from the arrival of Christopher Columbus in the 1490s. It was used to justify the forceful displacement of Native Americans as the United States expanded westwards in the nineteenth century. This same ideology (with the help of a racist theology that undergirded it) was used to justify the transatlantic slave trade – the kidnapping of Africans from their homeland, the harsh overcrowded ships across the Atlantic, the slave markets in the West Indies and the inhumane working conditions on the plantations – that went on for 450 years. It also served to defend both colonising (and evangelising) of Africans, Asians and beyond. Where either colonialism or evangelism was not possible, extermination was always the next alternative.
For the past 600 years, this has been European Christianity’s posture to the world. The language used to describe people of the rest of the world was the same – uncivilised, primitive heathens, barbarians, pagans – whether it was in 1500, in 1800 or in 1950. One could read William Carey’s treatise, the Enquiry, which is replete of language that would be unacceptable today.  Yes, there were some missionaries who refused to trade in white supremacy, people like Bartolomé de las Casas, Matteo Ricci, Johannes Rebmann and Joseph Booth, but these were always the exception to the rule. The whole system of Europe’s relations to Africa, for instance, was to colonise (to extract resources) and Christianise (to make colonialism easier). Many of the missionaries participated in this system, most knowingly, but many more unknowingly. Colonialism, be it in Latin America, Asia or Africa, was believed to be fulfilling God’s agenda for humanity and was, therefore, part of God’s mission. The gospel of Christ became the gospel of European culture and its superiority to the world and was backed up by Europe’s and now America’s militarism. Jesus not only gained blue eyes and blonde hair along the way, he also got to use the help of American warplanes and British gunboats.
The most troubling thing in all this is that for most white Christians, Jesus is silent amid all these atrocities. If Jesus is not silent, he is invoked to sanction violence and encourage white supremacists to keep the suburbs white. Many white Christians’ Jesus does not know how to relate with black and brown people apart from oppressing them – 600 years of church history can testify. While I was writing this essay, another black man, Jacob Blake, from Kenosha, Wisconsin, was shot seven times by police at a very close range. He miraculously survived, but he is paralysed from the waist down. When protestors went to the courthouse two days after his shooting, a young white supremacist man of 17, Kyle Rittenhouse, killed two people and wounded the third, and was later charged with double homicide (among several others); it was Christian communities that quickly raised funds for his legal fees. The faith of these Christians sees no contradiction in following Jesus and enabling white supremacists. The Jesus of these people is for white people only. This Jesus oppresses and enslaves non-white people. He sanctions the colonisation of Native Americans, Africans, Asians and many other people in the world. This Jesus would kneel on people’s necks if white supremacy were in danger. Needless to say, I refuse to follow this Jesus. This is not the Jesus who grew up in Nazareth in the Roman colony of Palestine who came to heal the brokenhearted and set the captives free. In his teaching, there is no room for white supremacy, and until racism is totally discredited, God’s mission in the world will depend on colonialism. Unfortunately, our theologies today fail to critique racism. Most of them have been shaped by people who either subconsciously hold racist views or do not have an understanding of racism because they have never been discriminated against based on their skin colour. Many of our theologians have benefitted from racism or white privilege and, as such, cannot write against it.
Christian mission and colonialism: a Malawian story
This story of mission and colonialism is personal to me. It is the story of my village, my people and my ancestors. My great-great-great-grandfather, Ntimawanzako Nacho, was among the first Malawians to come to Scotland for theological training at Stewarts College in 1885 as part of Blantyre Mission’s strategy for future leaders in what would later become Nyasaland, and even later, Malawi. Nacho later settled at a place in the Shire Highlands in Southern Malawi called Magomero, where my family still lives today. Back in 1861, Magomero was the first British mission station in Central Africa, but by the time Nacho came to Magomero, it had become a colonial estate belonging to David Livingstone’s descendants. It was the main location of an anti-colonial uprising in 1915. As such, Magomero is Ground Zero of both missionary activity and colonialism in Malawi. It is impossible to tell of either mission history or colonial history in Malawi (and, generally, Central Africa) without talking of my people at Magomero. It was, of course, made popular by Landeg White’s book Magomero: Portrait of an African Village,  which explores the biography of the village from 1850s to the late 1900s. To us Malawians, Magomero is the birthplace of both missionary work and colonialism in Malawi. The colonial government’s reaction to the 1915 uprising shaped the history of Christianity in Malawi for the next 50 years, until we attained our independence in 1964, and its implications still remain today, 55 years after independence.
Strike a blow and die
As the people gathered for their usual Sunday worship on 24 January 1915 at the Providence Industrial Mission at Nguludi in the Shire Highlands of Malawi, then the British colony of Nyasaland, everybody was aware that the service would not be business as usual. It was a strange era and the events of the day before, 23 January, had changed everything. A local (American-trained) Baptist minister, John Chilembwe, had just led a somewhat successful uprising against the colonial government and to prove it, he preached his sermon with William Jervis Livingstone’s severed head perched on a stick right next to the pulpit. The people celebrated – Chilembwe was their Moses, their messiah, the liberator who broke the yoke of Livingstone at Magomero. Most of Nyasaland was peaceful – the British colonial government had, for almost 25 years now, ruled the country with an iron fist. However, they all understood that John Chilembwe had essentially declared war on the colonial government – and that the British government would respond with full force. This was essentially a suicide mission; there was no way they could win. They understood that their mission was “strike a blow and die”.  That blow was struck on Saturday, 23 January, when Chilembwe sent groups of a badly organised militia to kill his neighbour, W. J. Livingstone, at Magomero.  This was the start of a Christian-based anti-colonial uprising wanting to free Nyasaland from British colonialism. Similar Christian struggles against colonialism would eventually help bring the entire colonial project to an end some 50 years later.
Long before John Chilembwe’s uprising, David Livingstone traversed the land that is now southern Malawi from 1859, dreaming of a possible British colony in that part of Africa. Livingstone’s time in southern Malawi followed a successful visit to England between 1856 and 1857 during which he published his instant best seller, Missionary Travels,  and gave lectures in several cities and universities; Dublin, Manchester, Glasgow, Oxford, Leeds, Liverpool, Dundee, Halifax and Birmingham and, of course, his home, Blantyre. The climax of the speaking tours was at Cambridge University on 4 December 1857, where he concluded his speech with a shout:
I beg to direct your attention to Africa. I know that in a few years I shall be cut off in that country, which is now open. Do not let it be shut again! I go back to Africa to try to make an open path for commerce and Christianity. Do you carry on the work which I have begun. I leave it with you! 
In immediate response, some students at Oxford and Cambridge Universities formed a mission association that they called Oxford and Cambridge Mission. Later, Durham and Dublin Universities joined and the association changed its name to simply Universities’ Mission to Central Africa, or in short, UMCA. Livingstone returned to Central Africa straight away, finding his way up the Shire River and seeing Lake Malawi for the first time in September 1859. His sense of mission in Africa was built on what he called the “Three Cs: Christianity, Civilisation and Commerce”. He believed that Britain would Christianise, civilise and bring a new form of commerce (to replace the slave trade) to Africa. In one letter to his friend, Professor Sedgwick, he stated, “All this [expedition’s] ostensible machinery has for its ostensible object the development of African trade and the promotion of civilisation, [but] I hope may result in an English colony in the healthy highlands of Central Africa.”  The outworking of Livingstone’s Three Cs led to a fourth “C” – colonialism – that would eventually overshadow the first three Cs. Livingstone himself was convinced that “it [was] the mission of England to colonise and to plant her Christianity with her sons [sic] on the broad earth which the Lord has given to the children of men [sic]”.  Indeed, it was Livingstone’s desire for Britain have a colony in Central Africa, and the Shire Highlands would be his Ground Zero. Between 1859 and 1860, he wrote extensively to his dear friends, Sir Thomas Maclear and Sir Roderick Murchison:
It is that the interior of this country ought to be colonised by our countrymen… I see more in that for the benefit of England and Africa than in any other plan… I am becoming everyday more convinced that we must have an English colony in the cotton-producing districts of Africa… Colonisation from a country such as ours ought to be one of hope, and not despair… the performance of an imperative duty to our blood, our country, our religion, and to humankind. 
He later added that if large numbers of the British urban poor emigrated to Africa they could begin new lives, no longer “crowded together in cities… in close ill-ventilated narrow lanes… But they [English colonists] can take a leading part in managing the land, improving the quality, increasing the quantity and extending the varieties of the production of the soil; and by taking a lead too in trade and in all public matters, the Englishman would be an unmixed advantage to every one below and around him, for he would fill a place which is now practically vacant.” 
In Livingstone’s defence, Tim Jeal suggests that Livingstone’s ideas of colonialism are quite different from what we understand to be colonialism today. He says:
His contemporaries, when they heard the words “The British Empire”, did not think of multiracial subject nations bowing to a central imperial power. Their pride in Empire was not the late-Victorian love of prestige and power, but more a pride in the idea that British men and women had settled in distant and previously thinly populated parts of the world, and were there reproducing all that was best in the British way of life – a free press, trial by jury and government by representative institutions. Most of Livingstone’s fellow-countrymen during the 1850s saw Empire as the link of common nationality that bound together, more by voluntary union than by power, a mother country and her white settled, and soon to be self-governing, colonies overseas. In this family, the West Indies and, above all, India were seen as strange anomalies simply because they, unlike for example Canada, Australia and New Zealand, had large “native” populations and were not predominantly “British” and white. 
I am not convinced Tim Jeal is right. We know that the British Raj in India started in 1858, long before the European colonisation of Africa, and that the Raj was not about “reproducing all that was best in the British way of life”. Thirty years after Livingstone brought the UMCA to my home, Malawi became a British Protectorate. In the following year, Livingstone’s family – his daughter Agnes, and her husband, Alexander Low Bruce – acquired the land that had been given to the UMCA plus 70,000 acres around it and turned it into a colonial estate. This estate was the centre of the events of 23 January 1915. My ancestor, Mtimawanzako Nacho, died by suicide in 1945 after years of conflict with his neighbours of the A. L. Bruce Estates.
Bishop Colenso is dead
Chilembwe’s mentor, a Derbyshire man by the name Joseph Booth, was a missionary in Malawi in the 1890s.  He arrived in Malawi in 1891 and was deported from the country by the British colonial government in 1907. He, however, visited South Africa in 1896 to promote African agency in mission especially among the Zulu Christians. As a white man, though, he was met with extreme suspicion. In the 1890s, the Zulus had a reminder for anyone wanting to deal with white people: “Bishop Colenso is dead.”  That was to say the only white man they could trust, Bishop Colenso, was dead. It was of no use trusting any white man because white men – both missionaries and colonial farmers – were all violent “men of guns”. Bishop John William Colenso (born in Cornwall in 1814 and died in Durban in 1883) was the first Bishop of Natal and as his biographies say, a fervent defender of the Zulu against both the Boer and British aggressions, including the Anglo–Zulu War of 1879.  He also defended other African tribes, gaining a title Sobantu in the process – the father of the people. His death at a time when the Scramble for Africa was brewing made it difficult for the Africans to trust Europeans. In 1897, Booth published a fiery anticolonialist manifesto entitled Africa for the Africans, which planted seeds that would lead to Chilembwe’s uprising in 1915.
Magomero is just one example of what happens when mission and colonialism become one. That David Livingstone’s mission station became his daughter’s colonial estate and that its managers then persecuted local Christians, burning their houses and schools and forcing them to work on the estate for free, reveals the problem of attaching mission to colonialism. After the murder of W. J. Livingstone, the British government killed many Malawian Christians, jailed many more, including several British missionaries who sympathised with the Africans, especially of the smaller denominations like the Churches of Christ. Laws were passed that required all the major churches to have white leaders. Any new churches that required registration had to have Europeans as leaders. All blackled churches were closely monitored to make sure there would be no repeat of Chilembwe’s uprising.
As a Malawian Christian from Magomero, my family has lived the story that proves that mission and colonialism were, for most Africans, two sides of the same coin of imperialism. Magomero shows why missionaries have been called the “religious arm of the colonial empires”, “the ideological shock troops for the colonial invasion whose zealotry had blinded them”,  “the spiritual wing of secular imperialism”,  or even “imperialism at prayer”.  In a nutshell, for many of us in the non-western world, mission and colonialism were strange bedfellows. I do not have space to rehash the history. I do not have problems with the historicity of the relationship between mission and colonialism. This leads me to the wider problem at the centre of this essay. Mission, as we speak of it today, is a European creation. (Of course, the same can be said of both its ecclesiology and theology.) The word “mission” itself did not mean the sending of Christians from Christian lands to non-Christian lands to convert the “heathens” or “pagans” until after the Reformation. It was the Jesuits (and the Society of Jesus was formed in 1540) who first used mission the way we do today. Contemporary mission is a European creation of a particular era when Europeans were becoming aware of the wider world beyond the bounds of Western Europe. That world, in the minds of the Europeans, needed to be Christianised and civilised by Europeans who were lucky to have been chosen to be both Christians and civilised people of that time. Beginning in the West Indies, moving down to Latin America, then up to North America, Asia and then Africa, Europeans worked hard to Christianise and civilise the world. At the centre of that effort was the belief that Europeans were destined to be superior to all the other peoples of the world. In a nutshell then, the very concept of mission as we understand it today has racism and white supremacy in its DNA. Mission, understood in this Eurocentric sense, could be easily used to serve European interests around the world. It is for this reason that the discipline of missiology continues to be a white-dominated subject even though white Christians form less than a third of world Christians. It is again for this reason that our very definitions in missiology, for instance that of a missionary, are still shaped by Eurocentric ideas – British Christians teaching English in Uganda are missionaries while Ugandan Christian nurses in Britain are migrants. It is also for this reason that when we talk about mission, we always generally speak in terms of sending European missionaries to other parts of the world like Africa even though Africa is more Christian than Europe. The “heathen” – to use the European language of the last century – is now in Europe, yet mission organisations are still focused on converting the Africans. Of course, Roland Allen and others have shown us that mission, as we practise it today, looks quite different from what we see in the New Testament.  Our missionary methods would, strictly speaking, be unrecognisable to Paul.
Essentially, we need to rethink mission for a world where images of a blue-eyed blond-haired Jesus are questionable. We need to learn how to engage in mission when all that the missionary brings is the liberating gospel of Jesus Christ minus a superior culture that seeks to civilise. Of course, empires colonise. That is what they do. Effective colonisation of a people must involve a changing of the people’s life philosophy, self-identification and culture. Christianity has been an integral part of the expansion of European empires since the fifeenth century. The world Christianity that we celebrate today has emerged because of the past 600 years of western domination of other parts of the world. There has been the Spanish/ Iberian Empire that colonised Latin America while the Portuguese Empire colonised Brazil and parts of Africa and India. At its peak, the British Empire stretched across all time zones. The era of European colonisation of Africa was short, largely running from the 1880s to the 1960s, but it has had drastic effects of the continent, many of which are yet to be resolved. At some point in the twentieth century, 6,000 British farmers owned the fertile 60 percent of Zimbabwe’s land, leaving millions of indigenous Zimbabweans to live on the remaining 40 per cent.  Of course, in the nineteenth century alone, a quarter of Europe’s population migrated to the Americas, Africa, Australia, colonising and Christianising as they went. We are now living through the age of the American Empire, but the tides are changing. Samuel Huntington suggested in his 1996 book The Clash of Civilisations that the western civilisation now faces competition from other civilisations.  Today, it is evident that both Russia and China have become even more influential players on the global political scene. This will, without a doubt, have an impact on western missions. As long as we keep attaching this beautiful and life-giving missio Dei to empires, it will always be used to marginalise, dominate and colonise others.
Non-western Christianity (which forms almost 70 per cent of world Christianity) is a religion without imperial powers. In many aspects, it is a religion pushing back against empires and in this sense, it is closer to pre-Constantine Christianity. Of course, it helps to remember that Jesus Christ was executed in his home country by a colonial power. The challenge for all of us as followers of Christ in the world is to put into practice the words of Paul that we are one in Christ – that in him, there is neither Greek nor Jew, neither male nor female, and neither free nor slave. Our baptism into the body of Christ makes us all equal, and that is the most important thing. But the call is not only to treat those of our faith as equals, as if it gives us a warrant to treat those outside the faith as less than us. All humanity is God’s humanity, made in God’s image. It is God who made us different and equal, and I am certain that God did not mean the differences to negate the equality. White supremacy is a lie invented by humans. It has benefitted many white people for generations going back 600 years when it has been ferociously enforced in parts of the world. It has created a world order in which to be white is normal; everyone else is a person of colour. This black skin is God’s work, God’s gift to the world through me. Unfortunately, it is not a gift that is easily received – it covers me in a colour that many find unacceptable. If anyone really believes that their skin colour makes them individually better or superior (without the privileges that come with being white and living in a world shaped by white people for other white people), they have to encounter Christ again. God’s Spirit will not let the sin of racism in all its forms – including both white supremacy and black supremacy and every colour in between – go unrevealed.
Mission after George Floyd
The death of George Floyd has made it possible for us to talk about race in ways that were not possible before. It is possible for us to actually have an audience and a conversation about the plight of black people. George Floyd’s death has made it difficult to ignore or deny the existence of racism and white supremacy. Many white people finally agree that black people are often treated inhumanely by systems designed to protect and preserve whiteness, that black people are often treated as if they are a threat to whiteness – to white lives, white bodies, white properties, white everything. Black people have, for ages, complained about racism in this world and have always been told to shut up and move on. Four hundred and fifty years of the European slave trade – we are not even talking about the Arabic slave trade, which went on for much longer – was followed by 80 years of colonialism and another 60 years of neocolonialism, yet, when black people complain, they have often been told “all that happened in the past”. My hope is that this anti-racism momentum that has galvanised many to stand with the Black Lives Matter movement leads to real changes in our societies. Of course, I am not entirely optimistic about this – black oppression has been around for 600 years. It only changes strategies – the slave trade, the Jim Crow laws in the US and colonialism in Africa, and then mass incarceration in the US and economic colonialism in Africa. European Christianity has been complicit in all this, and it will be complicit in whatever new strategy of oppressing black people will emerge. At least for now, we can name racism and white supremacy for the evil they are. I hope that both mission agencies and the discipline of missiology will be transformed.
For mission agencies, engaging in mission in a world where racism and white supremacy are discredited will be a new adventure for most of us, but I am certain it will take us closer to mission as it was intended to be. Many mission agencies will have to find new ways to exist with diminishing help from western empires due to growing secularism on the one hand (which has weakened western Christianity) and the rise of non-western empires on the other. Current western dominance in mission does not reflect the true picture of world Christianity, and the only way we can justify it is by pointing back to the colonial era – this is how it has always been. The very methods of western mission in the world are questionable today, and yet many of them cannot afford to let others lead. In a world without racism or white supremacy, most of the mission agencies in the West would be led by Latin Americans, Africans or Asians, to a greater success and better faithfulness to God’s mission. Any European or North American (we can include Australian and New Zealander) mission organisation that sends missionaries to other parts of the world and has more than half their leadership and personnel as white is part of the problem. This is a gross incongruency in a world where, potentially, most missionaries will come from Latin America, Africa and Asia.
For missiology – the teachers, their pedagogy and the resources they use – must reflect the very fact that mission is no longer a western phenomenon. The very fact that black and brown people form less that 5 per cent of theology and missiology lecturers in the UK is symptomatic of the problem. Black and brown people form 14 per cent of the population in the UK, yet they comprise a significantly large percentage of theology and missiology students across the country. It should not be possible to teach mission in any of our cities with an all-white team. Yet this is common, and generally speaking, most theology and missiology syllabi across UK institutions will have no less than 100 per cent white-authored books for students to read. Our church planting courses seem to ignore the fact that African movements are planting the most churches and are growing their churches the fastest, and the possibility that they know a thing or two to teach.
“Black Lives Matter” makes a critique of a system that Christianity helped create. The church must listen. It must reflect. Having done that, it must make practical steps to correct itself. I sincerely hope that changes will happen in these few months that will make us a more perfect bride for Christ and partner for God’s mission. May the Lord help us.
About the author
Harvey Kwiyani is a recovering missiologist from Malawi and currently teaching theology at Liverpool Hope University.
More from this issue
Let me breathe!
Let Me Breathe by Natasha Godfrey is a visceral responses to the murder of George Floyd: a protest, a plea, and a prayer. Above all, it is a lament, a prophetic complaint appealing to the heart of God, and whatever humanity is still present in those listening.
 Stephen Neill’s Colonialism and Christian Missions is a lame attempt to convince us that western Christian missions did not benefit from colonialism. What it does well, instead, is to show us exactly how European Christians used both their sense of white superiority and the conviction that they had been destined to civilise, even by force, the world. See, for instance, his report on the Requiremento in Colonialism and Christian Missions (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1966), 43–44.
 Neill, Colonialism and Christian Missions, 39.
 William Carey, An Enquiry into the Obligations of Christians to use Means for the Conversion of the Heathens (London: Carey Kingsgate Press, 1961).
 Landeg White, Magomero: Portrait of an African Village (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987).
 This was the actual title of George Mwase’s book on the events surrounding John Chilembwe’s uprising in 1915. See George Simeon Mwase, Strike a Blow and Die: The Classic Story of the Chilembwe Rising (London: Heinemann Educational, 1975).
 William J. Livingstone was cousin to Alexander Livingstone Bruce, who was son to Agnes Livingstone and, therefore, a direct descendant of David Livingstone. William was stationed at Magomero while Alexander L. Bruce was manager at the Luwelezi Estate, a few hours away in Mulanje. In January of 1915, A. L. Bruce was up in northern Malawi, fighting for the Crown in the First World War.
 David Livingstone, Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa (New York: Harper & Bros., 1858).
 Meriel Buxton, David Livingstone (Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2001), 106.
 Oliver Ransford, David Livingstone: The Dark Interior (London: John Murray, 1978), 159.
 Ibid., 160.
 Tim Jeal, Livingstone (New York: Dell, 1973), 224.
 Ibid., 188.
 For more on Joseph Booth, please see Harry W. Langworthy, “Africa for the African”: The Life of Joseph Booth (Blantyre, Malawi: Christian Literature Association in Malawi, 1996). Also Harry W. Langworthy, “Joseph Booth, Prophet of Radical Change in Central and South Africa, 1891–1915,” Journal of Religion in Africa 16, no. 1 (1986).
 George Shepperson and Thomas Price, Independent African: John Chilembwe and the Origins, Setting, and Significance of the Nyasaland Native Rising of 1915 (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1958).
 He seems to have been a passionate defender of all things African, especially against British colonialism. See George William Cox, The Life of John William Colenso, D.D.: Bishop of Natal, vol. 1 (London: W. Ridgway, 1888).
 See, for instance, Edward E. Andrews, “Christian Missions and Colonial Empires Reconsidered: A Black Evangelist in West Africa, 1766–1816,” Journal of Church and State 51, no. 4 (Autumn 2009): 663–64.
 John D. Omer-Cooper et al., The Making of Modern Africa: The Growth of African Civilization, vol. 2 (New York: Longman, 1968).
 Lamin O. Sanneh, Translating the Message: The Missionary Impact on Culture (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 1989), 88.
 Roland Allen, Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours? (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1962).
 Sam Moyo and Walter Chambati, eds., Land and Agrarian Reform in Zimbabwe: Beyond White-Settler Capitalism (Dakar: CODESRIA African Institute for Agrarian Studies, 2013), 42.
 Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order (New York: Touchstone, 1997).