Original Research - Special Collection: Ignatius van Wyk Dedication

Reformed spirituality and the spirit of reconciliation: A personal journey

Piet Meiring
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 74, No 4 | a4934 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v74i4.4934 | © 2018 Piet Meiring | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 15 February 2018 | Published: 31 October 2018

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Piet Meiring, Department of Science of Religion and Missiology, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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The article represents auto-ethnographical (narrative) reflections about the author’s journey towards reconciling diversity with the advent of democracy in South Africa. The author recounts aspects of his participation in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). It focuses on aspects of Reformed theology and spirituality as instruments for reconciling diversity. Local and international theologians opposed apartheid, calling it an unjust and indefensible political system, using their Reformed conviction, often applying the very same notions and principles. The article discusses the opposition to apartheid in the Reformed world, which culminated during the Ottawa meeting of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches in 1982 when apartheid was denounced as a ‘sin and a heresy’ – a legitimate cause for a Status Confessionis in a classical Reformed manner. The article demonstrates the way in which the TRC took note of all of this and includes testimonies of Reformed theologians and leaders who opposed apartheid, often paying a costly price.


Reconciliation; theology; auto-ethnography; reformed; spirituality; narrative


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