Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Missionalia]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=0256-950720130009&lang=en vol. 41 num. 3 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Editorial</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900001&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Perspectives on mission in the book of Zechariah</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900002&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The prophetic book of Zechariah is often neglected when studying the mission of God and his church. Zechariah originated during the post-exilic era in Jerusalem and there are many similarities between this community and the post-apartheid community in South Africa. There are several references to "nations" and "peoples" in Zechariah, but most of them refer to God's judgment against the nations. This article focuses on three key missionary passages namely Zechariah 2:11 (15), 8:20-23 and 14:16. The prophet visualises a faith community where the other nations will come and join them to experience the presence of God. Zechariah 2:11 uses covenantal language and emphasises that many nations "shall be my people." Churches struggle to attract non-believers in our time. The study of Zechariah can help the church to be more missional so that non-believers will utter the words of Zechariah 8:23: "Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you." <![CDATA[<b>Mission as liberation in socio-economic and political contexts: towards contextualand liberating theology of mission in the context of migration and human dislocation</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900003&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The article argues that for mission to be contextual and liberating it has to take seriously the plight of those who for various socio-economic and political factors have been forced to migrate from their countries of birth. Furthermore it critically analyses those factors that have led to the uprooting and the dislocation of Africans who are further impoverished, if not enslaved in the new countries where they are domiciled, particularly in the South African context. The paper argues that it is time, just like at Melbourne (1980) with regard to the poor, for those people who are dislocated to be "put in the very centre of missiological reflection". In addition they also have to be put in the centre of theological reflection, and in particular theological education. Only if the plight of foreigners (migrants) who have been dislocated is placed at the centre of theological education can the churches through their main functionaries who benefit directly from theological education play a liberating and humanising role in welcoming and humanising the foreigners who have been dislocated. Clergy, theologians and laity have significant roles to play in view of uprooting and dispelling the myths, stereotypes and resentment that often fuel xenophobia, in view making Africa hospitable to Africans. <![CDATA[<b>'There is death in the pot! 'Exploring the agency of faith communities and the bible as an asset in addressing mycotoxin contamination of food and animal feed</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900004&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This paper is an exploration of the contribution that faith communities can make towards stopping the vulnerability of poor communities to illnesses caused by the consumption of mycotoxin contaminated foods. Mycotoxins are associated with illnesses such as the dysfunction of organs and cancer. The article draws upon available literature, specifically from the author's study on home stored maize in Rungwe district, Tanzania in 2009, which revealed exceedingly high levels of mycotoxins in maize from subsistence farm households. Using the African Religious Health Assets Programme's (ARHAP) approach as a theoretical framework, the author argues for the engagement of faith communities and the Bible in stopping the consumption of mycotoxin contaminated foods. <![CDATA[<b>Comprehensive personal witness: a model to enlarge missional involvement of the local church</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900005&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en In the The Split-Level Fellowship, Wesley Baker analysed the role of individual members in the Church. He gave a name to a tragic phenomenon with which Church leaders are familiar. Although true of society in general it is especially true of the church. Baker called the difference between the committed few and the uninvolved many, Factor Beta. This reality triggers the question: Why are the majority of Christians in the world not missionally involved through personal witness and which factors consequently influence personal witness and missional involvement? This article explains how the range of personal witness and missional involvement found in local churches are rooted in certain fundamental factors and conditions which are mutually influencing each other and ultimately contribute towards forming a certain paradigm. This paradigm acts as the basis from which certain behavioural patterns (witness) will manifest. The factors influencing witness are either described as accelerators or decelerators and their relativity and mutual relationships are considered. Factors acting as decelerators can severely hamper or even annul witness, while accelerators on the other hand, can have an immensely positive effect to enlarge the transformational influence of witness. In conclusion a transformational model is developed through which paradigms can be influenced and eventually changed. This model fulfils a diagnostic and remedial function and will support local churches to enlarge the individual and corporate missional involvement of believers. <![CDATA[<b>The Binga outreach: a critical reflection on the Reformed Church in Zimbabwe's cross-cultural ministry</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900006&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en This article describes the first cross-cultural outreach of the Reformed Church in Zambia (RCZ) to a non-Shona speaking group. This Church founded preaching posts and, eventually, a congregation among the Tonga people living in the Binga area on the southern side of the Zambezi River / Kariba Lake. These people, of a unique culture, were displaced from their land, causing great suffering, when the dam was built and the lake formed. They received very little compensation - if any. Other tribes looked down on the Tonga people. In the nineties, University students initiated an "evangelism outreach." This article describes the events, relates something about the Tonga people, and deals with the RCZ's discovery that they were defaulting to the missionary methods of the Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) that founded their Church more than a hundred years earlier. This realization led to the question how they should go about reaching out to different cultural groups of people. <![CDATA[<b>Between Empire and Anti-Empire: African Mission in the 21<sup>st</sup> Century</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900007&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en There is always empire and anti-empire in societies. An analytical lens needs to see both together to provide a better understanding of human society. This is particularly important when it comes to issues of religion which resides in some form in both empire and anti-empire. This presentation will unpack five points. Firstly it will present a brief historiography of the existence of empire and anti-empire mainly but not exclusively as it relates to Christianity. Secondly it will provide the main parameters of a social analysis of the nature of empire and anti-empire. Thirdly it will articulate the specific role of religion (again mainly Christianity) in the societies of empire and anti-empire. Fourthly it will apply these findings to the specific context of Africa (mainly South Africa) indicating two signs of empire and anti-empire in our past and present context. Finally it will provide some goals for Mission in 21st century Africa which go beyond the empire/anti-empire paradigm. These are based on a vision of transformational authority centred in the paschal mystery. <![CDATA[<b>Book reviews</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072013000900008&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en There is always empire and anti-empire in societies. An analytical lens needs to see both together to provide a better understanding of human society. This is particularly important when it comes to issues of religion which resides in some form in both empire and anti-empire. This presentation will unpack five points. Firstly it will present a brief historiography of the existence of empire and anti-empire mainly but not exclusively as it relates to Christianity. Secondly it will provide the main parameters of a social analysis of the nature of empire and anti-empire. Thirdly it will articulate the specific role of religion (again mainly Christianity) in the societies of empire and anti-empire. Fourthly it will apply these findings to the specific context of Africa (mainly South Africa) indicating two signs of empire and anti-empire in our past and present context. Finally it will provide some goals for Mission in 21st century Africa which go beyond the empire/anti-empire paradigm. These are based on a vision of transformational authority centred in the paschal mystery.