Browsing Research Articles (Practical Theology and Missiology) by Author "Bowers-Du Toit, Nadine"
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- ItemActivating moral imagination : EXPOSED 2013 as a fourth generation faith-based campaign?(Pieter de Waal Neethling Trust, 2015) Bowers-Du Toit, Nadine; Forster, DionDavid Korten proposes a Fourth Generation approach (1990) to development that is value driven and sees social movements take centre stage in promoting a more just global society. Theologian Ignatius Swart (2006) has argued that Korten’s approach holds significant value for civil society role players such as the church, whose valuedriven agenda may serve to resist common values expressed by the powerful in society. Recently, the EXPOSED 2013 campaign has emerged as such a Christian social movement, seeking to mobilise up to 100 million Christians globally to take action against corruption. Using social media and church networks at all levels it aims to petition the G20 for more open tax regimes and greater transparency in international money flows to combat bribery and tax avoidance. This article documents and critically analyses the EXPOSED 2013 campaign through the lens of Korten’s Fourth Generation in dialogue with Swart’s faith-based analysis of Korten’s work.
- ItemThe centrality of partnership between local congregations and Christian development organisations in facilitating holistic praxis(AOSIS Publishing, 2019) Celesi, Mawonga P.; Bowers-Du Toit, NadineCentral to the argument of this article is the view that enhanced partnership between local congregations and Christian development organisations has the potential to facilitate holistic congregational praxis. In most cases, these entities of the church are found in the same locality, and therefore, need to define how they can together play a bigger and meaningful role in the transformation of their community. Bound by their faith mandate, working together as partners as opposed to competing with each other, they will find strength in each other and portray a good image of the Christian community in society. Guided by partnership ethos of trust, equality and mutual respect, they can both play a leading role in the nation-building project of South Africa. The article therefore explores the findings of the ‘Faith Matters’ study with regard to the relationship between local congregations and Christian development organisations and seeks to make recommendations with regard to ways in which this partnership could be strengthened.
- ItemA comparative discourse on Christian and secular distinctive features of transformational development(Southern African Missiological Society, 2017) Yoms, Ephraim; Bowers-Du Toit, NadineThe primary objective of this article is to explore some distinctions between Christian and secular views of transformation, characteristics of transformational development and the holistic practitioner. To meet this aim, relevant literature has been explored. The article argues that the Christian’s development motivation, goal and process are distinctive. The affirmation of indigenous knowledge; peaceful relationships, self-worth, empowerment and spiritual development are basic characteristics of transformational development. The paper also insists that the attitudes and characteristics of a holistic practitioner play a crucial role in realising these characteristics of transformational development. Understanding the value of this could assist faith-based organization and church-based development agency staff in engaging holistically.
- ItemDecolonising development? : re-claiming Biko and a black theology of liberation within the context of faith based organisations in South Africa(Southern African Missiological Society, 2018) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineAn upsurge in interest with regard to the role of religion in development has also seen an increase in the study of Faith Based Organisations (FBO’s). These organisations have been less well studied within the South African context, yet both in light of South African Christianity’s colonial and apartheid past – and the practical challenges that arise within a Global South development context such as northern donors, the cultural relevance of programmes and the tension between justice and charity within a South African context (where the face of poverty is still largely black) they should be the subject of academic inquiry. In light of the latter as well a growing trend within Development Studies with regard to decolonial and post-colonial critiques of development, this paper seeks to argue for the relevance of a both Black Consciousness and a Black Theology of Liberation in challenging and re-positioning the identity, role and practical challenges faced by the FBO within the South African context.
- ItemDoes faith matter? : exploring the emerging value and tensions ascribed to faith identity in South African faith-based organisations(AOSIS Publishing, 2019) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineFaith-based Organisations (FBOs) have been at the forefront of a growing interest of the intersection between religion and development. Their value has been recognised as both pragmatic (such as reaching the poorest at the grassroots level and encouraging civil society and advocacy) and, perhaps more contentiously, also ‘spiritual’ in nature because of advantages arising from faith itself (such as hope, meaning, purpose and transcendental power). For many FBOs, religion is far more than an ‘essential component of identity … it is a source of well-being’. In this manner, FBOs challenge the modernist assumptions of traditional development theory, which view the spiritual and physical domains as separate. In fact, for some FBOs, ‘spiritual faith provides the fuel for action’. This paper reports on an aspect of the empirical findings of a South African study and explores both the way in which Christian FBOs understand their Christian identity and the way in which they articulate this through their use of scripture as a motivating or an envisioning tool.
- ItemThe elephant in the room : the need to re-discover the intersection between poverty, powerlessness and power in ‘theology and development’ praxis(AOSIS Publishing, 2016) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineSouth Africa remains a divided community on many levels: socially, racially and socioeconomically. This is no more evident than in the recent protests – most notably waged on university campuses and on the streets in the past year. This, the article argues, is closely related to the need to reclaim the notion of power by those who feel they remain relegated to the social and economic peripheries after over 20 years of democracy. While ‘theology and development’ praxis has been most closely associated in a post-apartheid era with welfare and charity approaches or pragmatic interaction with state and civil society (both of which have been critiqued), what has not been sufficiently addressed is the notion of power which once dominated ecclesiastical discourses. This is the proverbial ‘elephant in the room’, which the article argues must once again be revisited and re-engaged – both within scholarly reflection and within church practice – in order to address these divides.
- ItemGangsterism on the Cape Flats : a challenge to ‘engage the powers’(AOSIS OpenJournals, 2014-11) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineOne of the most pressing issues in the urban ghettos of the Cape Flats is that of gangsterism and the discourse of power and powerlessness that is its lifeblood. Media coverage over the past two years was littered with news on gangsterism as the City of Cape Town struggles to contain what some labelled a pandemic. It is a pandemic that is closely tied to a deprivation trap of poverty, marginalisation, isolation, unemployment and, ultimately, powerlessness. The latter concept of powerlessness and its interplay with these factors constituted the main thrust of this article as it explores the concept of power (and powerlessness) as deeply relational with the economic, psycho-social and spiritual dimensions. It is proposed that Kingdom power challenges the status quo within such contexts and offers the church an alternative framework within which to engage prophetically.
- ItemThe impact of gentrification on the refugee community : interfacing practical theology and human geography(Pieter de Waal Neethling Trust, 2019) Msabah, Barnabe Anzuruni; Bowers-Du Toit, NadineAny development project of a neighbourhood that leads to the forceful and involuntary relocation of existing residents is unjust and contrary to God’s desire for life in its fullness and human flourishing. This paper looks at the lived experiences of African refugees in the socially and spatially polarised South African cities as they attempt to find space for themselves and for their businesses in order to survive. The paper provides insights on the notion of plurality and urban public space by taking into consideration the practice of gentrification in South Africa vis-à-vis the wellbeing of displaced communities. From the analysis of data gathered, gentrification accentuates socio-spatial polarisation and residential segregation in major South African cities, which calls for the need to de-gentrify urban cities for the sake of holistic community transformation. This is evidenced in the hopelessness and the helplessness of displaced communities as well as the quality of life they lead. De-gentrifying the previously gentrified space could lead to the transformation that communities need. The way gentrification is practiced in South Africa does not promote social cohesion or lead to holistic transformation. Rather, it reinforces social exclusion and holds back people’s hope for improved wellbeing.
- ItemMeeting the challenge of poverty and inequality? : ‘hindrances and helps’ with regard to congregational mobilisation in South Africa(AOSIS Publishing, 2017) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineThe findings of an empirical study entitled ‘Meeting the challenge of poverty and inequality in the Cape Metropole: Factors impacting the mobilisation of congregations in their response to poverty and injustice’ reaffirm that the majority of congregations are still largely operating within a ‘relief and welfare’ paradigm with regard to poverty. In attempting to analyse the hindrances to churches’ mobilisation in addressing poverty from a holistic perspective, it became clear that, while there were common challenges (such as lack of capacity and feeling overwhelmed in view of the enormity of the task), several other intersectional issues (e.g. race, class and theological convictions) also play a role with regard to engagement. This article, therefore, analyses and discusses how these factors have an impact on the mobilisation of local congregations in their response to the twin challenge of poverty and inequality.
- ItemThe ongoing challenge of restorative justice in South Africa : how and why wealthy suburban congregations are responding to poverty and inequality(AOSIS Open Journals, 2014-03) Bowers-Du Toit, Nadine; Nkomo, GraceSouth Africa remains one of the most unequal societies in the world and any discussion around poverty and the church’s response cannot exclude this reality. This article attempts to analyse the response of wealthy, ‘majority white’ suburban congregations in the southern suburbs of Cape Town to issues of poverty and inequality. This is attempted through the lense of restorative justice, which is broadly explored and defined through a threefold perspective of reconciliation, reparations and restitution. The first part explores a description of the basic features of poverty and inequality in South Africa today, followed by a discussion on restorative justice. This is followed by the case study, which gives the views of clergy and lay leaders with regard to their congregations’ perspectives and responses to poverty and inequality within the context of restorative justice. Findings from the case study begin to plot a tentative ‘way forward’ as to how our reality can more constructively be engaged from the perspective of congregational involvement in reconstruction of our society.
- ItemRemembrance and renewal : exploring the role of the church as an agent of welfare after 15 years of democracy(Stellenbosch University, 2012) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineThis paper explores the contributions made by the church in the past towards welfare provision in South Africa, and current challenges faced by the church in acting as a welfare provider after 15 years of democracy. The church is wellplaced to affect societal transformation and has played a significant historical role as a welfare agent in South Africa, as evidenced by the establishment of soft infrastructure during colonialism and in the advocacy and the formation of social capital that took place during the apartheid era. In a post-apartheid era, many churches continue to wrestle with issues such as: reconciliation and redistribution in an unequal society; bringing holism to social welfare; redefining their prophetic role; lack of capacity in delivery; and relief mode delivery. This paper, therefore, also proposes paths of renewal for the future, and draws from the WGRIP case study of the town of Paarl, Western Cape, in particular.
- Item“Rise up and walk” : tracing the trajectory of the Carnegie discourse and plotting a way forward(Pieter de Waal Neethling Trust, 2014) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineTh is article will provide a comparative analysis of the findings of the first Carnegie Commission on the Poor White Problem, 1932, and the second Carnegie second Carnegie Inquiry into Poverty and Development in Southern Africa, 1982, with regards to the role of the church as an agent of change. It also seeks to navigate the tension inherent in the “double legacy” of the church’s historical engagement with issues of poverty and inequality in order to reflect on its current praxis. Th e article, therefore, highlights both the challenges and opportunities for the church’s role as we celebrate 20 years of democracy.
- ItemSexual violence against children and youth : exploring the role of congregations in addressing the protection of young girls on the Cape Flats(AOSIS Publishing, 2018) Weber, Shantelle; Bowers-Du Toit, NadineThe Children’s Institute, a research arm of the University of Cape Town, reports that 18.5 million children live in South Africa. The institute’s vision is for ‘A society in which children are valued, nurtured and protected; their rights are realised; and where they are able to participate, develop and reach their full potential’. A quick scan of South African newspaper headlines, however, reflects numerous accounts of the abduction, rape and murder of young girls on the Cape Flats in Cape Town, South Africa, during 2016–2017. This seems to confirm the statistic that one in three children is a victim of sexual violence and physical abuse before the age of 18. Sadly, many of these instances are alleged to have been linked to a family member or close family friend. Some have even been linked to Christian church contexts. This article explores this unacceptable rise in violence against these young girls and from this vantage point continues to more specifically reflect on the role congregations can play in such instances. The article argues that such abuse takes place within an ecosystem of violence and then considers how the trauma of such an experience has affected the faith formation of these young girls. The article, furthermore, highlights the recent publication entitled ‘Children, Church and the Law’, which calls for the establishment of church policy on the protection of children in our local congregations and communities as one preventative and educative tool in addressing this issue.
- ItemUnapologetically faith based : the nature of donor engagement in the context of South African faith-based organisations(AOSIS, 2019-12-12) Bowers-Du Toit, NadineThe funding of faith-based organisations (FBOs) is often complex and at times unsustainable because of many factors that may render the FBO and its valuable work in serving the most marginalised vulnerable to fickle donor funding. Not least amongst such factors are that of the ‘faith factor’ – namely, the ways in which the religious dimension of an FBO works – which may be seen as too religious for secular donors such as corporates, government and other international funders. While there is a growing body of literature concerning the effects of donor funding on the work of FBOs, there has been no empirical study conducted in South Africa that specifically explores the issue of donor funding and relationships. This article, therefore, seeks to explore the nature of donor funding in South Africa with regard to the FBO sector, its challenges, sustainability and the role of faith identity regarding the relationship between donors and FBOs.