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Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae

versão On-line ISSN 2412-4265
versão impressa ISSN 1017-0499


KNOETZE, Johannes. Powerless partners: One beggar telling another where to find bread. Studia Hist. Ecc. [online]. 2015, vol.41, n.1, pp.40-55. ISSN 2412-4265.

The relationship between the 'powerful' Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) and the many churches that were planted by the mission work of the DRC has always been and still is a very sensitive matter. This paper will take a historical look at the relationship over the last decade (2004-2014) between the Dutch Reformed Church in Botswana (DRCB) and the Dutch Reformed Church in South Africa, especially the Dutch Reformed Church in the Northern Cape (DRCNC). It was during this time that a paradigm shift started developing in the relationship. After some socio-economic changes and 'new' missiological reflection from the DRCNC on their own understanding of mission, the DRCNC took a definite decision to move away from a deed of agreement relation with the DRCB and work towards a partnership relation. After requests from the DRCB regarding theological education, the DRCNC decided to broaden its vision to the church in Botswana and not only the DRCB. This paper wants to look at the process of transformation of a power relation which involves learning, unlearning, relearning and new learning of the different contexts, as well as the understandings and realities of mission, ecclesiology, partnership, tradition, interdependence, theological education and leadership.

Palavras-chave : Dutch Reformed Church in Botswana; Dutch Reformed Church Northern Cape; mission; ecclesiology; partnership.

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