Faith and reality : the role and contributions of the ecumenical church to the realities and development of South Africa since the advent of democracy in 1994

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 16
  • SDG 10
  • Abstract:

    Much has been written about the role and contributions of the church in the struggle against, and the dismantling of, apartheid in South Africa (e.g. De Gruchy & De Gruchy 2004; Hofmeyer, Millard & Froneman 1991; Plaatjies-Van Huffel & Vosloo 2013). However, very little has been written from a church historical point of view about the role of the church in the development and shaping of democracy in South Africa since 1994. This article attempts to provide a historical survey of the role and contributions of the church, specifically, in building the new democratic South Africa. It pays particular attention to the struggles of the South African council of churches (SACC), the split in the ecumenical movement and the efforts of the church to impact on the realities in South Africa since 1994 until the present. In spite of all the challenges, the church has contributed to the building of the democratic South African nation. I shall illustrate this by examining archival material and information extracted from mainly the primary sources such as statements, pronouncements, press releases, events, minutes and actions undertaken by the church within the period mentioned.