On-line version ISSN 2309-9089
Acta theol. vol.32 suppl.16 Bloemfontein Jan. 2012
A Second International Conference of Missiology was presented at the Faculty of Theology by the Department of Missiology on the theme: "Good news for the poor and the sick" on 13 May 2011. International speakers, namely Prof. Joachim Kügler (Germany), Prof. Nalini Arles (India) and Prof. Lovemore Togarasei (Botswana) presented papers. The aim of the Conference was to engage in academic discussion on the way and means to be involved in the serious challenges posed by poverty and the HIV/AIDS epidemic. From different perspectives solutions were sought and possible biblical, theological and developmental suggestions to get involved and to bring hope were discussed.
This Supplementum is the product of the encounter with each other. The papers were presented from the perspectives of the participators. Prof. Joachim Kügler invites us to take a new look at the beatitude of the poor so as to engage in the struggle against poverty from a biblical perspective. Prof. Dons Kritzinger deals with the question as to whether it is possible to eradicate poverty. Dr Gideon van der Watt engages the preference of many of the poor in Africa to deal with poverty by turning to the evangelical-theological position and charismatic churches. Poverty in South Africa is not only a phenomenon among certain groups of previously disadvantaged people, but White poverty is also prevalent. Prof. Derrick Mashau explains that mission as action in hope can be a positive answer to the problem. Prof. Pieter Verster discusses the presence of the church, sometimes small and seemingly insignificant, in the informal settlement and how they deal with the challenges of poverty. Dr Frans Hancke views the Church as God's missional people and how they have deep meaning for the suffering of people. An interesting take on entrepreneurial development and how people are empowered to improve their lives is explained by Marietjie Botha and Ruth Albertyn. Prof. Nalini Arles explains from the perspective of India how the church engaged the challenges of HIV/AIDS. Prof. Lovemore Togarasei engages Paul in the search for a solution to questions on African masculinity in the context of HIV/AIDS. Dr Lourens Schoeman explains how the "body of Christ" metaphor is challenged by the realities of both HIV/AIDS and poverty.
The different perspectives will help readers gain new insights into the struggle and, it is hoped, lead to positive engagement with poverty and HIV/ AIDS. May this contribute to a deep theological and humane encounter.
Prof. Pieter Verster (UFS)