Browsing by Author "Koopman, Nico"
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- ItemBonhoeffer and the future of public theology in South Africa : the on-going quest for life together(Pieter de Waal Neethling Trust, 2014) Koopman, NicoThis article discusses the meaning of the theology of Dietrich Bonheoffer for Public Theology in South Africa. It specifically discusses the meaning of Bonhoeffer for the public quest for life together in churches and a society that hunger for a joint journey towards a life of dignity for all, justice for all, freedom for all. Bonhoeffer’s own emphasis on life together is discussed with reference to his emphasis on life together as a Trinitarian gift , and his Christological and ecclesiological understanding of human beings and life together. Directives for the concrete practice of life together are inferred from Bonhoeffer’s work by specifically discussing his own commitment to a life of interpathy, and his thinking about morally acceptable compromises in our quest to advance life together.
- ItemChurches, universities and the post-TRC process : impulses from a consultation(African Sun Media, 2020) Koopman, NicoThis contribution, drawing on inputs of mentioned consultation, reflects on the implications for churches and universities of the mandate for a post-TRC process. It is argued that this mandate constitutes a threefold challenge, namely the challenge of royal-servant unity and social cohesion, the challenge of priestly reconciliation and social healing and, finally, the challenge of prophetic justice and social solidarity.2 As can be inferred from this threefold description, the threefold office of Christ is appealed upon to comprehensively describe the royal-servant, priestly and prophetic roles of Christians and fellow-citizens outside the Christian tradition. As such, a brief description of the notion of the threefold office of Christ is appropriate at this point.
- ItemCitizenship in South Africa today : some insights from Christian ecclesiology(Southern African Missiological Society, 2015) Koopman, NicoThis essay reflects upon the notion of citizenship in the context of post-apartheid South Africa. Citizenship discourse in South Africa takes place in the context of the movement away from apartheid, and in the context of the processes of Africanisation and globalisation. An attempt is made to make a contribution to citizenship discourse in South Africa by drawing from theological insights, specifically from the classic formulation of the four marks of the church, namely catholicity, unity, holiness and apostolicity. Based on these ecclesiological marks the following four sets of features of citizenship are identified: apostolic and inclusive citizenship; united and justice-seeking citizenship; holy and virtuous citizenship, and apostolic and responsible citizenship.
- ItemThe common good and human dignity : some very preliminary remarks(Stellenbosch University, 2012) Koopman, NicoThis paper attempts to give a description of the use of the notion of “the common good” in theological discourse. A brief historical analysis of the idea of common good is offered. A distinction is made between so-called thinner and thicker modes of the common good. It is argued that consensus on the thinner and thicker versions of the common good is plausible and possible. Guidelines are offered for dealing with situations where disagreement and incommensurability exist with regard to effectively serving the common good. Suggestions are made for realising the common good, e.g. the formulation and implementation of appropriate policies and practices, as well as the formation of people of virtue and character. In conclusion, three functions of the common good are suggested.
- ItemConfessing and embodying the catholicity of the church in the context of glocality(Stellenbosch University, Faculty of Theology, 2007) Koopman, NicoThis paper is devided into three parts. The first part gives a description of the nature and task of civil society in the context of glocality, namely of interaction and interdependence between local and global levels. In a second section the meaning of the catholicity of the church is outlined. In a third and final section an attempt is made to spell out the role of the churches in local and glabal civil society by focusing on what it means to confess and embody catholicity in the context of glocality.
- ItemHuman dignity in Africa : a christological approach(Stellenbosch University, Faculty of Theology, 2010) Koopman, NicoThe violation of human dignity is more acute on the continent of Africa than in most other places in the world. In this article the dehumanizing influence of a wide range of factors is considered: amongst others growing inequality, violence, illness and various forms of prejudice. It is then argued that insights from the Christology of John Calvin provide avenues for restoring human dignity in Africa, and that his work on the threefold office of Christ may prove to be particularly helpful.
- ItemInclusive dignity and land reform in South Africa(Stellenbosch University, 2014) Koopman, NicoThis article explores the light that the notion of inclusive dignity might shed on the quest for land reform and land restitution in South Africa. It offers a discussion of the notion of inclusivity by outlining the various faces of exclusivity in contemporary societies, especially on the continent of Africa. It discusses the indispensable role of three dimensions of human rights to acknowledge, affirm and actualize dignity for all, including nature. It argues that dignity can be actualized in two ways, namely through the provision of opportunities for people whose land had been take away, to build a life where the features of dignity are actualized. This implies access to the most basic necessities and goods of life, participation in the political and economic processes of society, and opportunities to develop God-given potentialities. A second mode of actualizing dignity in the context of land restitution processes is that people who choose to return to the original or an equivalent piece of land, be granted the opportunity to return, and that they receive appropriate support from government and other institutions to use the land optimally.
- ItemOp weg na ’n menswaardige samelewing? : die rol van teorievorming en wetgewing(Pieter de Waal Neethling Trust, 2011) Katts, Donald J.; Koopman, NicoThe Bill of Rights of the South African Constitution of 1996 envisages a society of human dignity, both in its preamble and in article 10. The logic seems to be that the fulfilment of human rights will imply the actualisation of a society of dignity. This paper investigates the role that both theory-formation about the implementation of human rights and lawmaking processes that enhance the implementation of human rights, can play in the realisation of a society of human dignity.
- ItemPublic Theology in pluralistic societies? : lessons from the theology of Etienne de Villiers(AOSIS Publishing, 2012) Koopman, NicoThis article discussed the meaning and significance of the theological contribution of Etienne de Villiers for the task of prophetic public theology in pluralistic societies. It was argued that De Villiers’s theology enriched public theology in a variety of ways. De Villiers convincingly argued that Christian morality does have unique contents. These unique contents enrich and deepen discussions in the pluralistic public domain. De Villiers also showed that Christians can enter the public domain from the perspective of so-called thicker theological convictions like sin and love. De Villiers emphasised the participation of Christians in so-called technical discourses. This implied that Christians strive to make their convictions as far as possible intellectually accessible to a pluralistic audience, that Christians strive for moral consensus, sound moral decision-making, influencing of the public opinion and participation in policy- making processes in pluralistic life. This technical discourse with the aim to reach moral consensus and to impact on policymaking processes should also be practiced within Christian communities where a plurality of moral views, even conflicting views, exist. This quest for decision-making, consensus and impacting on public policy are to be advanced in the ecumenical Christian family, and even between Christians and other religions.
- ItemSome theological and anthropological perspectives on human dignity and human rights(Stellenbosch University, Faculty of Theology, 2007) Koopman, NicoThis article acknowledges that human dignity is a concept that cannot be not easily defined. It attempts to acquire a cognitive grip on dignity by defining it in terms of the needs and anxieties of human beings and in terms of narratives of the violation of dignity. The foundations of human dignity in Trinitarian faith are then discussed and specifically the implications and value of Helmut Thielicke 's concept of alien dignity is briefly evaluated. It is argued that alien dignity does have the potential to enrich contemporary dignity discourses. The argument that the notion of alien dignity protects and enhances the dignity of the most vulnerable in society is specifically acknowledged and cherished in contemporary discourses on a theological anthropology of vulnerability. Finally, the article proposes that human rights are a crucial means by which to protect the dignity of the most vulnerable members of society and to enhance respect for dignity.
- ItemTheological anthropology and gender relations(Stellenbosch University, Faculty of Theology, 2004) Koopman, NicoIn this article an anthropology characterized by vulnerability, relationality and dependence is offered as a pathway towards building male and female relations that are characterized by harmony and joy. This anthropology is in contradiction to the modernistic anthropology of power, autonomy and independence. The proposed anthropology is based in the doctrine of the economic trinity. This anthropology and the consequent joyous gender relations are actualized in Christian communities that do not live with practical atheism but that take the triune God seriously.
- ItemTheology and the building of civilizing democracy in South Africa(Pieter de Waal Neethling Trust, 2014) Koopman, NicoThis paper discusses the contribution of theology to the building of a civilizing democracy, i.e. a democratic society where a life of justice to all is advanced. A society is only “civilized” where justice to especially the most vulnerable is advanced. Justice rests in dignity and co-exists with equality and equity, as well as with freedom. Theology makes a threefold contribution towards a society of justice. Theology reveals the deeper meaning-giving framework, and forces of social cohesion and moral living without which a liberal democracy cannot flourish. Theology offers richer descriptions of notions like justice, which advance the implementation and fulfilment of these features. Theology makes a contribution towards the mobilization of an activist civil society and citizenship in search of a civilizing society of justice.
- ItemTowards a pedagogy of hybridity, reconciliation and justice(SUN MeDIA, 2012) Koopman, NicoIntroduction: For the past decade Dr Xolile Simon and I have been teaching a course on reconciliation and justice at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa. Our fifth year Masters of Divinity (MDiv) class is constituted by students of a wide range of ethnic, cultural and socio-economic backgrounds, as well as diversity with regard to gender and sexual orientation. Their diversity reflects the diversity of broader South African society, and of various countries in different parts of the globe. They are the students who now study together on a campus that is on a journey from exclusion to inclusion, from participation in apartheid injustices to the building of a just and reconciled society. They are part of a campus that strives to nurture hope on the continent of Africa by contributing to a life of dignity, justice and freedom on our campus and in broader society. These students originate from communities that still experience high levels of ethnic alienation. Even though apartheid laws were scrapped two decades ago, and although there is more inter-ethnic contact and exposure than during apartheid, millions of South Africans, many struggling economically, are still insulated from each other to a great extent. These students come from different socio-economic backgrounds. The majority of our coloured and black students still struggle to survive financially, while most of white students experience socio-economic wellbeing.
- ItemTowards the fulfilment of three generations of rights : a theological contribution by Koos Vorster(AOSIS Publishing, 2012-10) Koopman, NicoIn this article the theological contribution of Koos Vorster to human rights discourses was discussed. It was shown how he focused upon all three generations rights, namely the first generation civil and political rights, second generation social, economic and cultural rights, and third generation developmental and ecological rights. He appreciates the importance of nurturing citizens and leaders of public and civic virtue and character for the implementation of rights and the creation of a human rights culture. He also gives special attention to the implementation of ecological rights and therefore discussed various forms of ecocide. Ultimately, Vorster stimulates systematic theological discourses on ecological rights by viewing the implementation of ecological rights as a theological matter. It had to do with the heart of Christian faith.