The diaconal role of the roman catholic church within the diocese of Lindi Southern Tanzania : an assessment of its transformational development

Kamwendo, John Francis (2012-03)

Thesis (DTh)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This research study addresses the assessment of the role of the Roman Catholic Church in addressing poverty within the Diocese of Lindi in Southern Tanzania. The study is interested in assessing whether the Roman Catholic Church in the Diocese of Lindi is fulfilling its mandated role of diakonia – the ministry of service, philanthropy (initiatives for communal good focusing on excellence of human life), and Christian love to ones neighbor and its role, commitment and application within the Diocese. In addition, this research will focus on the assessment of the fulfillment of the diocese‟s diaconal role of empowering the rural poor to “develop their capacity and skills so that they become competent decision makers with their confidence to act on their choices” (Roy and Hartigan 2008:67). In this study, efforts are made to study poverty from the reality experienced by the poor in the Diocese of Lindi. The component themes in this research study are: - The research design of this study and the literature review; relative to Diakonia; Catholic Social Teaching of the Roman Catholic Church; and Bryant Myers‟ framework for Transformational Development. - The experience of poverty, diakonia, Catholic social teaching and transformational development by the respondents, with specific reference to the selected parishes in the Diocese of Lindi. - A reflection of the reality of poverty from what emerged in literature with empirical qualitative research that is conducted among the poor. - This research study suggests a model of Diakonia, which is contextual, relevant and liberating. Focusing on the Scriptures, the social teachings of the Church, the literature and listening to the poor during interview process, this research proposes that the Diocese of Lindi implement a model consistence with Diakonia that takes the following seriously: 1. The role of the church is mandated to carry out as it ministers to the poor in deed and word, guided by Christian love, to enable the poor to lead a better life (Pieterse 2001:111). Also, an African worldview1, which focuses on communal and systemic approaches to life and its problems. 2. The Roman Catholic Church deals with social, economic and political issues (Zalot and Guevin 2008:46). Socio-economic and political dimensions of life, with the recognition that poverty is structural and if the problems of the poor are to be dealt with effectively, the socio-economic and political structures are also to be addressed and transformed. 3. The reflection of concern for seeking positive change in the whole of human life, socially and spiritually (Myers 1999:3, 14). The poor, as living human documents, should not only be read and interpreted, but also taken seriously and regarded as central to the process of community development. The poor are to play the central role in the transformation of society. They are to be involved in the “functional priesthood of all believers” (Stevenson-Moessner 2005:21). The local churches of the Diocese must take seriously the socio-economic and political structures that perpetuate poverty and other injustices in society. The proposed model of Diakonia described herein is offered as a contribution in the direction of community development.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie fokus op die evaluering van die rol van die Rooms-Katolieke Kerk in die aanspreek van armoede binne die Bisdom van Lindi in suidelike Tanzanië. Die studie is geïnteresseerd in die assessering van die rol van die Rooms-Katolieke Kerk in die bisdom van Lindi rakende haar mandaat om diakonia te vervul – die bediening van die naastediens, filantropie (inisiatiewe gefokus op die gemeenskaplike welheid ten opsigte van die uitnemendheid van die menslike lewe), en Christelike liefde in toewyding aan die naaste en die toepassing daarvan bine die Bisdom. Daarbenewens sal hierdie navorsing fokus op die assessering van die vervulling van die bisdom se diakonale rol ten opsigte van die bemagtiging van die landelike armes deur die ontwikkelling van hul kapasiteit en vaardighede sodat hulle bevoegde besluitnemers kan word wat met selfvertoue hul keuses uitoefen” (Roy en Hartigan 2008:67). In hierdie studie, word pogings aangewend om warlike armoede soos ervaar deur die armes in die bisdom van Lindi te bestudeer. Die volgende toepaslike temas word in die navorsing behandel: - Die navorsingsontwerp van hierdie studie en die literatuuroorsig, relatief tot die Diakonia, Katolieke maatskaplike leerstellinge van die Rooms-Katolieke Kerk, en Bryant Myers se raamwerk vir Transformasionele Ontwikkeling. - Die ervaring van armoede, diakonia, Katolieke sosiale onderrig en transformasionele ontwikkeling deur die respondent, met spesiale verwysing na die geselekteerde gemeentes in die bisdom van Lindi. - 'n weerspieëling van die realiteit van armoede in die literatuur; te same met empiriese kwalitatiewe navorsing soos waargeneem onder die armes. - Hierdie navorsing studie dui op'n model van Diakonaat, wat kontekstueel, relevant en bevrydend is. Terwyl daar gefokus word op die Skrif, die sosiale leer van die Kerk, die literatuur en luister na die armes tydens die onderhoudsproses, wil hierdie navorsing voorstel dat die Bisdom van Lindi uitvoering gee aan 'n model in ooreenstemming met die Diakonaat deur die volgende ernsting te neem: 1. Die rol wat die kerk het as 'n mandaat om die armes in woord en daad te bedien aangedryf deur Christelike liefde,sodat die armes in staat gestel word om 'n beter lewe te lei (Pieterse 2001:111). Ook 'n Afrika-wêreldbeskouing, wat fokus op 'n kommunale en sistemiese benadering tot die lewe en sy probleme. 2. Die Rooms-Katolieke Kerk se werkswyse van die hantering van sosiale, ekonomiese en politieke kwessies (Zalot en Guevin 2008:46). Sosio-ekonomiese en politieke dimensies van die lewe, met die erkenning dat armoede struktureel is en om die problem van die armes doeltreffend te behandel moet die sosio-ekonomiese en politieke strukture ook aangespreek en getransformeer word. 3. Die weerspieëling van besorgdheid oor die nastreef van 'n positiewe verandering in die geheel van menslike lewe - sosiaal en geestelik (Myers 1999:3, 14). Die arme, as die lewende menslike dokumente, moet net nie gelees en geïnterpreter word nie, maar moet ook ernstig opgeneem word en beskou word as sentraal tot die proses van gemeenskapsontwikkeling. Die armes moet die sentrale rol speel in die transformasie van die samelewing. Hulle moet betrokke wees in die “funksionele priesterskap van alle gelowiges” (Stevenson-Moessner 2005:21). Die plaaslike gemeentes van die Bisdom moet ernstig op te neem die sosio-ekonomiese en politieke strukture wat die armoede en die ander onreg in die samelewing laat voortbestaan. Die voorgestelde model van die Diakonia soos in die tesis beskryf, word as 'n bydrae aangebied met die ontwikkeling van die gemeeskap as uitkoms.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/20291
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