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Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae

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

Studia Hist. Ecc. vol.35  supl.1 Pretoria Dez. 2009


The history and future of training faith leaders to participate in Employee Assistance Programmes



Leepo Modise; Christina Landman

Research Institute for Theology and Religion, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa




This article consists of three parts. Firstly, the history of Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs) in the South African workplace is traced briefly, and historical reference is made to the involvement, or lack thereof, of faith care in these programmes. Secondly, empirical research done in rural and semi-rural working environments is presented to ascertain the need to incorporate a faith perspective into these EAPs. A case is made out for enriching EAPs by means of a "wholesome" African-Christian sense-making model that replaces the classic dualist view of soul and body with a theanthropocosmic view on employee job satisfaction. Thirdly, recommendations are made on the multi-faceted training of faith leaders - and eventually theological students - to empower them to participate in the formulation and execution of EAPs.
The article argues that faith, belief and trust as fields of experience, and especially the skills engendered by faith and belief, are intrinsically part of a professional's experience of "job satisfaction". The article furthermore argues that faith and belief do not belong to the realm of the "soul" as opposed to "the body"; the article evaluates and considers a faith, belief and trust-based dimension of EAPs within their overall collective and institutional context in terms of a dynamic approach carried forward by a theanthropocosmic view on human wellness.



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1 This article is based on the DTh thesis of LJ Modise, "Reflections on the well-being levels of professionals in rural and semi-rural areas - A faith theoretical perspective" (Department of Systematic Theology, University of South Africa, 2009), which was supervised by Proff C Landman and E van Niekerk.

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