A Discourse-Onomastics of Selected (Neo)Pentecostal Church Names in Lagos Metropolis

Friday, 20 July 2018: 17:30
Oral Presentation
Esther AJIBOYE, Covenant University, Nigeria
Taiwo ABIOYE, Covenant University, Nigeria
Felix OKE, Anchor University Lagos, Nigeria
This study is focused on the discourse of church names in Lagos, Nigeria where there is a surge in the growth and popularity of Pentecostal religious practices. Despite several research efforts on naming in general and church names (Ecclesiology) in particular, there seems to be insufficient research on the relationship between church names and people/worshippers’ needs. Thus, in examining the discourse of church names in Lagos Metropolis, the paper considers the current patterns as well as the processes of church naming. It not only identifies the linguistic features and functions of church names, but also the nexus between church names and people’s socio-economic needs in the region under study. For data, 150 registered Pentecostal and neo-Pentecostal church names are purposively sampled from Lagos Metropolis – a densely populated mega city and former capital of Nigeria. Additional data comprises in-depth semi-structured interview reports from worshippers and founders to elicit information concerning such church names. Data is qualitatively and quantitatively analysed using AntConc software for concordance and collocates. The study is anchored on theories of discourse analysis, onomastics, and Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The findings reveal that while sampled church names reflect the doctrinal outlook of (neo)Pentecostal churches, many of these names are innovative and in response to diverse socio-economic needs of these church groups’ respective followings.