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What is JHIA?

An institute geared to preserving memory and promoting historical knowledge, the Jesuit Historical Institute in Africa (JHIA) started in 2010 as an idea of the Jesuit General, Adolfo Nicholás, S.J., to encourage the study of his Order's largely unexplored involvement in the evangelization of Africa. Further deliberations pointed to the need for such a study to be carried out within a broader social, political, cultural and religious context. The JHIA's vision was thus expanded to that of offering a cost-effective environment for ground-breaking research on the religious histories, cultures and traditions of the people of Africa and Madagascar.

Jesuit round-table meeting about the JHIA project, August 2011

The JHIA is home to a growing collection of books and manuscripts that go far beyond what is exclusively Jesuit to include records and publications from other missionary societies, literature on Christianity in general and on other religions of Africa (including Islam), and a vast array of Africana material that covers centuries of histories, politics, cultures and traditions of Africa and its adjacent islands (see the Nature of JHIA Collection). The entire collection is built from donations from institutions,  families and individuals  who have come to value the JHIA's vision and have therefore supported it's mission by depositing their material at the institute gratuitously or by purchasing new books for its library. The JHIA undertakes to preserve such donations professionally and to make them available to researchers freely. The JHIA also supports research and publication on historical themes of topical interest to Africa.

Building on its six-year gains, the JHIA is now looking to the future with a holy boldness. The institute is currently executing short-term (2017-2021) and long-term (2017-2026) strategic plans drawn to ensure that the JHIA achieves its optimum potential for schoarship in Africa. Designed to strengthern current operations and prepare the institute to occupy permanent premises that are envisaged under the long-term plan, the short-term goals pursue those activities that ground the JHIA vision, create more visibility, and build strong partnerships. The long-term goals are designed to bring the vision of the JHIA to full maturation and to make the institute self-sustaining for at least a hundred years. The long term goals are being pursued through the construction of permanent premises, the establishment of a JHIA Endowment Fund, and the installation of a print-on-demand facility. (See more under Projects and Appeals).








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DEATH ANNOUNCEMENT – Fr Victor-Luke Odhiambo, SJ

Jesuit Historical Institute in Africa (JHIA) would like to extend our heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and the Jesuits... Read more

JHIA 2019 Diary - Price: KSh 800 | $ 10 …

JHIA 2019 Diary - Price: KSh 800 | $ 10 | € 8

Our 2019 Diary is now out in circulation. We at JHIA believe that writing to yourself is an important means... Read more

The Way, the Truth and the Life Book Sal…

The Way, the Truth and the Life Book Sale!

More than two millennia after Jesus Christ this book unveils the timeless fruitfulness of the greatest Christological... Read more

Protestant and Catholic Academicians Mee…

Protestant and Catholic Academicians Meet in Nairobi

Encounters between Catholics and Protestants in Africa was the theme of an Ecumenical Conference held in Nairobi recently. The conference... Read more

Past International Forum

Past International Forum

  'Encounters between Catholics and Protestants in Africa' is an upcoming international forum organized by the Jesuit Historical Institute in Africa... Read more

Fr General's Visit to JHIA

Fr General's Visit to JHIA

The Jesuit Historical Institute in Africa (JHIA) would like to thank the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Fr... Read more

JHIA Joins RefoRC

JHIA Joins RefoRC

During its meeting of May 2015, the Board of RefoRC accepted the Jesuit Historical Institute in Africa (JHIA) as member... Read more