Original Research - Special Collection: Practical Theology

The dilemma of traditional and 21st century pastoral ministry: Ministering to families and communities faced with socio-economic pathologies

Gordon E. Dames
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 66, No 2 | a817 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v66i2.817 | © 2010 Gordon E. Dames | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 16 March 2010 | Published: 23 November 2010

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Gordon E. Dames, University of the Free State, South Africa

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A holistic pastoral methodology is sought in transforming the socio-economic and systemic pathologies of poor families and local communities. Missional pastoral ministry is proposed from a critical hermeneutical and contextual perspective for the empowerment and liberation of people living with complex and multiple forms of pathologies. A transversal rationality model is applied merging the complexity and divergence of cross-disciplinary and intradisciplinary approaches between missional theology, practical theology, contextual theology, religious pedagogy and ethics. Practical theology in South Africa should be applied from and within the contemporary socio-economic, systemic and ecclesiological pathologies.


missional pastoral ministry; socioeconomic and systemic pathologies; maintenance ecclesiologies; transversal hermeneutics; povertystricken families and communities; liberation and empowerment


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