Original Research - Special Collection: Religious Innovation and Competition Amidst Urban Social Change

Churches claiming a right to the city? Lived urbanisms in the City of Tshwane

Michael Ribbens, Stephan F. de Beer
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 73, No 3 | a4690 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v73i3.4690 | © 2017 Michael Ribbens, Stephan F. de Beer | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 05 June 2017 | Published: 27 November 2017

About the author(s)

Michael Ribbens, Institute for Urban Ministry, Resonate Global Mission, South Africa; Centre for Contextual Ministry, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa and Department of Practical Theology, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa
Stephan F. de Beer, Centre for Contextual Ministry, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa and Department of Practical Theology, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

This article sets out to describe how churches have responded and continue to respond to fast-changing urban environments in Pretoria Central and Mamelodi East, animating Henri Lefebvre’s sociological perspective of citadins or urban inhabitants. We make tentative interpretations and offer critical appreciation. Churches, which were historically separated from the city centre, now directly participate in claiming a right to the city. With necessary fluidity, churches express lived African urbanisms through informality, place-making, spatial innovation and everyday rituals. Though not exhaustive, the article focuses on rituals shared among historic urban Christians and contemporary African urban Christians, namely prayer, listening to the Bible and worship. These rituals, when combined with the churches’ spatial innovation, to a certain degree contribute to place-making.

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Crossref Citations

1. Demographic change: Ecological and polycentric challenges for white Christianity in urban South Africa
Kelebogile T. Resane
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies  vol: 75  issue: 1  year: 2019  
doi: 10.4102/hts.v75i1.5266