Poverty and the COVID-19 pandemic: A challenge to the church

HTS Teologiese Studies/Theological Studies

Field Value
Title Poverty and the COVID-19 pandemic: A challenge to the church
Creator van der Merwe, Johan M.
Subject — poverty; COVID-19 pandemic; church; biblical; theology; post-apartheid
Description This article addresses the challenge to the church in the struggle against poverty amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. It starts by giving an overview of the enormity of poverty in a post-apartheid South Africa. It also indicates how the pandemic has enlarged the problem to extreme proportions. After looking at poverty through the lens of the Bible, the article attempts to define poverty as different forms of deprivation on the one hand and inequality on the other hand. In South Africa, deprivation and inequality are the two sides of the same coin, which serve as important indicators for the local church in the struggle against poverty. This article thirdly refers to the history of the church to describe how the church, as an agent of change, is called to react to the challenge of poverty. The fourth part of the article introduces the action plan that was developed by the South African Council of Churches through Local Ecumenical Action Networks. This serves as an example of how different churches can work together in communities in the struggle against poverty in a holistic way. The article concludes with the emphasis that the struggle against poverty in South Africa is an ongoing struggle that has been accentuated by the COVID-19 pandemic.Contribution: This article examines the devastating effect that the COVID-19 pandemic has on communities in South Africa with specfic reference to poverty. The focus is on how the church as agent of change is in the perfect position to rise to this challenge to make a difference by means of Local Ecumenical Area Networks.
Publisher AOSIS
Date 2020-12-02
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion — Historical Inquiry and Literary Analysis
Format text/html application/epub+zip text/xml application/pdf
Identifier 10.4102/hts.v76i1.6221
Source HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies; Vol 76, No 1 (2020); 6 pages 2072-8050 0259-9422
Language eng
Relation https://hts.org.za/index.php/hts/article/view/6221/16823 https://hts.org.za/index.php/hts/article/view/6221/16822 https://hts.org.za/index.php/hts/article/view/6221/16824 https://hts.org.za/index.php/hts/article/view/6221/16821
Coverage South Africa 21st century Church History COVID-19 pandemic 57; Male
Rights Copyright (c) 2020 Johan M van der Merwe https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0