The practical theological challenges faced by the Apostolic Faith Mission of South Africa Fountain of Life Congregation in the Winterveldt community

Sejeng, Mankopane Sydney (2011-12)

Thesis (MTh)--Stellenbosch University, 2011.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study is about the practical theological challenges faced by the AFM of SA Fountain of life congregation in the Winterveldt community. The Fountain of life congregation has minimal involvement in the community of Winterveldt, a community plagued by numerous life threatening plights. The congregation is in a survival mode after stagnating for a number of years and with serious challenges of declining or even facing possible extinction. This study's goal is to develop a practical theological theory, strategy and process which the AFM of SA Fountain of life congregation would be inspired to implement in order to contribute towards arresting theological, social, economical and moral degradation in the community of Winterveldt. The researcher employed a practical theological methodology and explored areas that are vital for the answering of the research problem, "What can be done in the Fountain of life congregation to maximize the participation of all members to serve the community of Winterveldt as well as the larger society?" It is hypothesized that Practical Theology will give the AFM of SA Fountain of life guidance and equip this faith community and its leaders theologically to consider their vocation, to develop a practical theological ecclesiology, a way to be the true, faithful and effective local church which is the salt and light of the world, including Winterveldt. The study explored the "world" in which Fountain of life finds itself, in terms of its contextual as well as the congregation's identity analysis. The normative aspects of being a missional church which covered the missional identity, empowerment and involvement of laity, and missional leadership were elaborated, while spiritual discernment with areas particular to Fountain of life received attention in the normative aspects of spiritual discernment. It is recommended that the identity of Fountain of life be grounded in the mission of the Trinitarian God (missio Dei of the Trinitarian God). The missionary identity and character of Fountain of life should be built and developed upon the eight dominant patterns found in a missional church. The researcher strongly encourages the Fountain of life congregation to employ the missional leadership strategies while engaging in a total involvement leadership style, which integrates high concern for getting the task completed and a high concern for good people relationship. The leadership of Fountain of life is further encouraged to use the suggested laity empowerment strategies in order to empower, develop, and involve the laity. Missional transformation can only succeed if the laity is empowered and committed to deal with new realities. Leadership is key in engaging the laity. The pastor and the leadership of Fountain of life must teach, educate, lead, and engage the congregation, and also partner with other communities of faith and organizations especially the South African Partnership for Missional Churches (SAPMC) to succeed. Fountain of life should practice missional praxis theology, a holistic theological model that describes the methodology for congregations to develop their own contextual ecclesiology within the parameters of God‘s overall design for the Church.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die navorsing handel oor die prakties-teologiese uitdagings van die Apostoliese Geloofsending (AGS) in Suid-Afrika se Fountain of life gemeente in Winterveldt (Tswane metropolitaanse area). Fountain of life het minimale invloed in die Winterveldt gemeenskap, 'n gemeenskap wat gebuk gaan onder baie ernstige sosiale probleme. Die gemeente is net besig om te oorleef, dit is stagnant en staar agteruitgang of algehele ondergang in die gesig. Die studie poog om teorie, strategie en ʼn proses te ontwikkel wat die Fountain of life gemeente in staat sal stel om ʼn bydrae te lewer om die algehele agteruitgang op teologiese, sosiale, ekonomiese en morele gebied, aan bande te lê en selfs om te keer. Die navorser gebruik ʼn prakties-teologiese benadering ter beantwoording van die navorsingsvraag: "Hoe kan die Fountain of life gemeente deelname van lidmate maksimaal benut sodat hulle Winterveldt en die groter gemeenskap kan bedien?" As die Fountain of life AGS gemeente die prakties-teologiese uitdagings wat die gemeenskap in die gesig staar, kan ondersoek en verstaan asook maniere vind om dit aan te spreek kan hulle die lot en swaarkry van die gemeenskap se mense help verlig. Die navorsing ondersoek die gemeente se bestaanswêreld, haar meer onmiddellike konteks asook haar identiteit. Wat is die normatiewe basis van ʼn missionale gemeente? Wat is die implikasies daarvan vir missionale identiteit? Hoe word lidmate bemagtig en hoe raak hulle betrokke? Wat behels missionale leierskap? Verder word baie klem geplaas op die normatiewe beginsels van geestelike onderskeidingsvermoë en wat dit in die praktyk vir die gemeente beteken. Die studie stel voor dat Fountain of life haar identiteit in die sending van die drie-enige God (missio Dei) leer vind. Die agt kenmerke van ʼn missionale gemeente behoort die identiteit van die gemeente te bepaal. Die navorser voel sterk dat die gemeente missionale leierskap strategieë moet implementeer. Dit behels volle oorgawe aan die taak sowel as ʼn volledige betrokkenheid by mense. Die gemeente se leierskap word aangemoedig om lidmate te bemagtig, te help om geestelik te ontwikkel en om in die kerk en gemeenskap betrokke te raak. Missionale transformasie kan alleen slaag as lidmate betrokke is, bemagtig is en bereid is om nuwe werklikhede te hanteer. Leierskap moet hiertoe verbind wees. Die plaaslike pastoor en die gemeente se leierskap moet lidmate toerus, voorgaan en betrokke kry. Hulle moet ook met ander geloofsgebaseerde organisasies netwerk, in die besonder die Suid-Afrikaanse Genootskap van Gestuurde Gemeentes. Fountain of life gemeente word opgeroep om missionaal en holisties teologie op ʼn praxis styl te beoefen sodat die gemeente ʼn eie kontekstuele ekklesiologie binne die koninkryk se parameters van die missio Dei kan ontdek.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/17983
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