On-line version ISSN 2312-878X
Missionalia (Online) vol.43 n.1 Pretoria 2015
This edition of Missionalia is going to print shortly after the funeral of Professor Willem Saayman. Willem Saayman has deeply impacted on South African church, academy and society in various ways, as his close friend and the current general secretary of the Southern African Missiological Society, Professor Nico Botha, bear witness to in the tribute contained in this edition. Given the important influence of Saayman on the field of Missiology in South Africa, the Southern African Missiological Society in particular, and also in this journal, it is appropriate that Saayman is remembered on the pages of this edition. An important part of Saayman's academic legacy is also found on the pages of past editions of this journal, with the repeated citation of some of his articles published in this journal bearing witness to his influence. Of particular significance was his work on a Christian response to AIDS (1991), the development of a Pentecostal Mission model in South Africa (1993), the future of missionary ecclesiology (2000) and more recently his contribution in assisting the African church and missiological community to find clarity on the relationship between the terms missionary and missional (2010). His publications obviously extend far beyond the pages of Missionalia, and we know that his work will continue to influence others.
Students throughout history, both in South Africa and elsewhere, has often played a key role as a critical voice in society. During the first months of 2015 students in South Africa has insisted that our society should again consider questions on colonialism, transformation and decolonization. This was most visible in the #Rhodesmustfall movement at the University of Cape Town but similar conversations and movements can be found across the country. In the first article, Des van der Water identify key issues in postcolonialism, reminding us that the legacies of colonialism is still with us and that the struggle against racism and social dislocation must remain on the agenda of missiology.
Innocent Iyakaremye contributes to the mapping of religious health care assets, related particularly to the Free Methodist Church of Southern Africa. He introduces the Wesleyan Health Care Ministry and demonstrate how the Free Methodist Church has been using this in responding to HIV and AIDS in particularly the Southern KwaZulu-Natal area.
Timothy van Aarde introduce a missional reading of Ephesians, focusing particularly on the term οικονομία in Ephesians 1:3-14, while Ian Nell provide an analysis of an MTh program in missional leadership introduced at the Faculty of Theology of the University of Stellenbosch. Nell provide a comprehensive practical theological analysis of the program, starting with the background to the program, focusing on the content and reflecting on student feedback.
Ernst Conradie attempt to bring clarity on key doctrinal differences between ecumenical and Pentecostal theology. Positioning himself as one more at home in the ecumenical movement, his particular concern is to engage Pentecostal pneu-matology and describe the challenge this pose to the ecumenical movement. In a context of deep divides between various forms of Christianity his work contribute to setting the agenda for a more engaged dialogue. Lastly Rian Venter provide a map of the main developments in the field of eschatology. He discuss five such developments but give particular attention to the intellectual 'turn to the other', discussing the relations between ecology, global Christianity and post-colonial theory and es-chatology, to name some examples.
Both the disciplinary spread of the contributors to this edition but also the work being discussed is a reminder that mission remain in dialogue. These dialogues include academic dialogues between different disciplines, dialogues between different parts of the church and dialogues with the society in which we find ourselves. It is our hope that this edition will contribute to the important critical conversations about what happening around Southern Africa.
Prof RW (Reggie) Nel and Rev GJ (Cobus) van Wyngaard
Saayman, W.A. & Kriel, J. 1991. Towards a Christian response to AIDS. Missionalia 19(2):154-167. [ Links ]
Saayman, W.A. 1993. Some reflections on the development of the Pentecostal mission model in South Africa. Missionalia 21(1):40-56. [ Links ]
Saayman, W.A. 2000. "Missionary by its very nature... A time to take stock. Missionalia 28(1):4-22. [ Links ]
Saayman, W.A. 2010. Missionary or missional? A study in terminology. Missionalia 38(1):5-16. [ Links ]