Being in touch : embodying Christian hospitality in an urban context

Swanepoel, Lyndsay Rudloph (2015-03-01)

Thesis (MTh)--Stellenbosch University, 2016.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study argues that an adequate Christian theology of hospitality understands hospitality as an embodied practice that seeks in proximity and vulnerability, and often from the margins, to welcome the stranger in his or her strangeness. Hence reductive notions that domesticate or romanticize hospitality should be challenged as part of the search for a theological account that takes embodiment seriously. This theology is not undertaken from a position of aloof power but is cruciform, shaped by the cross. It is proposed that welcoming the stranger in oneself enables bodies to welcome other strangers. Notions of normality are challenged, arguing that all bodies who seek safety in Christian communities should be welcomed, albeit that hospitality is not to be separated from processes of discernment. The main argument is built around the hypothesis that an adequate understanding of Christian hospitality in an urban (congregational) context centres around the notions of marginality, proximity and vulnerability.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie het ten doel om aan te toon dat ‘n bevredigende begrip van Christelike gasvryheid verstaan dat dit ‘n beliggaamde praktyk is, wat in nabyheid en weerloosheid, en dikwels van die marges, daarna streef om die vreemdeling te verwelkom in sy/haar vreemdheid. Daarom is dit nodig om vereenvoudigde of verromantiseerde idees van gasvryheid uit te daag as deel van die soeke na ‘n deeglike teologiese beredenering wat beliggaming ernstig neem. Hierdie teologie word nie bedryf vanuit ‘n onbetrokke magsposisie nie, maar neem die vorm van die kruis aan, en is gevorm deur die kruis. Voorts word dit gestel dat ten einde die vreemdeling ander te kan verwelkom, dit nodig is om die vreemdeling in die self te verwelkom. Konsepte oor wat normaal is word uitgedaag, met die suggestie dat alle liggame wat veiligheid in Christelike gemeenskappe soek, verwelkom behoort te word, hoewel die proses nie geskei kan word van onderskeiding nie. Die hoof-argument word gebou om die hipotese dat ‘n bevredigende verstaan van Christelike gasvryheid in ‘n stedelike (gemeentelike) konteks rondom die gedagtes van marginaliteit, nabyheid en kwesbaarheid sentreer.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/98594
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