Since Robert J. Schreiter’s ground breaking theoretical work, reconciliation has emerged as a key motif within mission theory and practice. The concept has remarkable utility both within the church as a community of ‘neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor male and female’, and without in the contexts of post-apartheid South Africa and post-genocide Rwanda. This advanced course will begin with the theological and political theories of reconciliation and their potential interconnection, considering particularly Schreiter’s work. It turns to the appropriation of this concept within South Africa, Rwanda and the role played by the church within this political reconciliation. While this has met with some significant success, not all contexts appear open to ‘reconciliation’ as a central political category – due precisely to its Christian context. Notable here is the complaint of indigenous communities within a post-colonial context. The course will be an exercise in constructive missiology with concentrated attention on a single theological concept, its ground, limits, political utility and future directions.
Summarize a critical missionary approach to reconciliation
Articulate a theology of reconciliation with attention paid to its roots within the western theological tradition and its revision and application in a variety of contexts;
Assess the significance of such theology for the church as a body of people of gendered, cultural, economic, and political difference;
Evaluate the utility of reconciliation as a category for political mobilisation, with special attention paid to the criticisms of indigenous peoples within post-colonial contexts.
Online learning materials, tasks and tutorial discussion
1000 word critical book review of: Robert J. Schreiter, The Ministry of Reconciliation: Spirituality & Strategies (Orbis Books, 1998)
4000 word essay conceived as an exercise in constructive theology on a topic selected in consultation with the lecturer
Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 19 Oct, 2015
Unit Record last updated: 2019-06-05 12:42:58 +1000