Original Research

Guidelines for effective community transformation from a practical theological perspective: An African case study

David Mutemwa, René Hattingh-Rust, Willem J. Hattingh
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 52, No 1 | a2325 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v52i1.2325 | © 2018 David Mutemwa, Rene Hattingh Rust, Willem Johannes Hattingh | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 October 2017 | Published: 19 June 2018

About the author(s)

David Mutemwa, Department of Theology, North-West University South Africa; Auckland Park Theological Seminary, South Africa
René Hattingh-Rust, Auckland Park Theological Seminary, South Africa
Willem J. Hattingh, Auckland Park Theological Seminary, South Africa


This article reports on the pragmatic task that formed the conclusion and flagship part of a master’s degree (MTh) research study into the effectiveness of the transformational task of the church in the Sesheke area. The methodological approach in the research has been according to Osmer’s four tasks of practical theological interpretation, namely the descriptive-empirical, interpretive, normative, and pragmatic tasks. Each of these tasks has been used to address a specific stage of the study. A separate preceding article by the same authors focused on the first task, while this article addresses the fourth. The Pastors’ Fellowship, referred to as the Sesheke Church in this article, has accepted their biblical mandate to engage in community transformation activities aimed at alleviating the plight of the poor and less-privileged people in society. The overall outcome of the research has shown that the Sesheke Church has failed at its transformational task for several reasons, as will be briefly discussed in this article. Therefore, the pragmatic task has endeavoured to formulate practical guidelines to enhance the effectiveness of the Sesheke Church’s task. The authors believe that this article will contribute to the discourse of practical theology regarding community transformation from the unique context of the Sesheke Church’s transformational task and the respective guidelines for effective community transformation. Burns and Grove state that understanding the meaning of a phenomenon in its context makes it easier to understand similar phenomena in other contexts.


church; community transformation; guidelines for effective community transformation; transformational task


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