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Axolile Qina

South Africa & Stellenbosch University, 2016

I am currently a researcher who is interested in theology, particularly the field of New Testament. My current research area is situated in John’s Gospel and the problem of animal sacrifice among contemporary Xhosa Christians. I am particularly concerned about how the Bible challenges and transforms cultural identity. These ancient texts present Jesus Christ of Nazareth in various ways, and yet in our diverse contemporary settings people read, believe, and interpret his teachings. My research aim is to develop hermeneutical models that can assist Christians articulate their faith within their cultural context of today. Currently, my work is focused primarily in the field of African Christianity, but is particularly on Xhosa Christian hermeneutics.

My research background and education is in Theology. I have the following theological degrees: Bachelor Degree in Theology (BTh) (Honours included) & Master of Theology (MTh) (New Testament) from Stellenbosch University; and Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS) from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. During this time I won various bursaries, such as: Recruitment Bursary for my 4 year undergraduate degree, HB Thom Postgraduate Bursary & a Stellenbosch Merit Postgraduate Bursary for the Master of Theology degree. Moreover, during my masters, I also won the prestigious Mandela Rhodes Scholarship in 2016. This scholarship allowed me to further enhance my personal and leadership development through the workshops we were expected to attend as part of the scholarship. In addition, the books that we were responsible to read for these workshops, also helped me grapple with social issues that currently affect people on the African continent.

Prior to this, I was very involved in student leadership at Stellenbosch University, where I became the first African Black President (Head Student) at Helderberg Mens' Residence, and the first African Black Male Chairperson (President) of the Student Representative Council (SRC). This student leadership background and my theological concern to assist people to better formulate their identity within their respective cultural contexts, culminated in receiving the Shaun Johnson Memorial Doctoral scholarship (previously known as: Leverhulme Mandela Rhodes Doctoral Scholarship). This scholarship gave me the opportunity to pursue a PhD degree in New Testament and Christian Origins at Edinburgh University, which I am currently in the process of completing, allowing me to development my first hermeneutic for Xhosa Christians who continue to perform animal sacrifices today.

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