Main aim of this thesis is to look at the procedure of cross-cultural work by Catholic missionaries.
From mission lands, we know cultural destruction as well as cultural adaptation. The thesis discusses interculturation from a theological-historical background in order to explore possible regulations and motivations of present missionaries either to apply or not to apply this method in their work. The thesis takes Nias Island in Indonesia as a case study to research the interaction between interculturative mission and traditional arts. Nias lets us observe an advanced level of interculturation yet staying strictly within Roman Catholic regulations. Based on a survey of the traditional arts of Nias, particularly music, Catholic Churches and services are examined for their cultural appearances: western influence on Nias, Niassan elements in the Christian rituals and liturgy, as well as moments of fusion between Nias traditional arts and the cultural factors imported by the European missionaries. Examples from different art forms, including – besides music – architecture, sculpture, carving, jewelry, and textiles, will show problems and chances: by all insufficiency detected, individual missionaries on Nias contribute to the preservation of art forms.

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