In chapter 16, the missionaries attempt to explain the Christian message to the men and women of Umofia. Through an interpreter, the missionary explains that all of the gods that the tribe worships are not really gods at all. He tells them that there is only one God. The missionary adds that the tribes gods are merely pieces of wood and stone. The people of Umofia respond with laughter. They think the white man (missionary) is insane. The people become even more confused when the missionary tries to explain Jesus. They can't understand how their is only one God if he had a son who was also God. Most of the tribesmen leave the missionary gathering believing the missionary to be insane, but Nwoye is captured by the message.
Later in the novel, others are converted because the missionaries actions began to prove to some extent that the gods of the tribe are not real.