In die Skriflig
On-line version ISSN 2305-0853
Print version ISSN 1018-6441
DU PLOOY BAIN, Erina and DE KLERK, Ben J.. An empirical investigation into the social and medical conditions of religious people living with HIV or AIDS in order to determine guidelines for hope. In Skriflig (Online) [online]. 2012, vol.46, n.2, pp.1-9. ISSN 2305-0853.
This first article in a series where the central and perspicacious position of eschatological hope and witnessing thereof in the life of a believer with HIV or AIDS is emphasised, focuses on the medical and social circumstances of people with HIV or AIDS. Empirical research via a qualitative study at the health centre of an urban vehicle manufacturing plant was conducted in this study. The research methodology and design are discussed and verified. Two group interviews with multivariables per participant (believers with HIV or AIDS and a control group of health workers) established that people living with HIV or AIDS are spiritually enormously strengthened by their eschatological hope of eternal life with God without this earthly suffering. Pastoral needs include prayer, comfort and koinonia and/or fellowship. They revealed an extremely grave situation, which can, however, be made manageable with inter alia positive signature strengths. Follow-up articles will focus on the contribution of meta-theories of complementary and entwined sciences. Practical guidelines in terms of witnessing hope by means of kerygmatical, liturgical, koinonial and diaconial communication and acts will be suggested in these articles.