Liturgical guidelines for congregations to have a voice in the serious problem of economical inequality in South Africa30 June 2015
It is part of the calling of the church to address issues of justice and peace, and to care for the poor and the marginalised in society, because the church is the body of Christ and therefore the heart and hands of Christ in this world. In this article, the problem statement is: ‘How can liturgical guidelines help churches to become involved in the economic inequality and the consequent poverty in our society?’ Richard Osmer articulates a practical theological method that is largely employed in this research. South Africa is the world’s most unequal nation. The South African economy grew steadily from 1992 to 2008, but the benefits were distributed unequally, such that income inequality actually worsened. It is necessary to get a truthful starting point for the church to address this need − and the best way will be to discover the identity of the church. The church’s identity is described in the liturgical sense in three phases of involvement in society, namely (1) the gathering and sending of the local congregation; (2) the liturgical responsibility with the ecumenical church; and (3) the possible cooperation with those who do not share the Christian faith.