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Acta Theologica

Print version ISSN 1015-8758

Abstract

OLIVER, E. South Africa: the arduous task of facing our religious past. Acta theol. [online]. 2011, vol.31, n.1, pp. 72-94. ISSN 1015-8758.

The term 'rainbow nation' tends to soften both the intensity and divergence of the complex mixture of origins, languages, ideologies, cultures, lifestyles and skills of the South African society. With Christians totalling more than 80% of the population and the Church recognised as the strongest non-government organization, one apparent exception to these differences is religion. However, incapacitated by their past, Afrikaners were unable to respond positively during the critical stages of transformation and find themselves marginalized, at the edge of the 'rainbow nation'. Evading confrontation with the past or constantly postponing it while waiting for the current crises to subside is no longer an option. This article attempts to identify unresolved issues from the history, culture and theology of Afrikaners that form obstacles in the way of positive development and progress. Facing these issues is the prerequisite to identifying and implementing remedial actions in order to find new direction and life.

Keywords : History; Afrikaners; Religion; National identity.

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