Original Research

Die kerk en openbare beleidsvorming – ’n praktiese voorstel vir gereformeerde getuienis

N. Vorster
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 38, No 3 | a442 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v38i3.442 | © 1970 N. Vorster | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 August 2004 | Published:

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N. Vorster, Navorser: Skool vir Kerkwetenskappe, Potchefstroomkampus, Noordwes-Universiteit, South Africa

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Church and public policy – a practical model for reformed witness

The transition to a new constitutional dispensation in South Africa during 1994 has fundamentally changed the relation between church and state. The main differences between the old and new dispensation that have a direct influence on the public role of the church as institution are, inter alia, the following: the change from parliamentary sovereignty to constitutional supremacy, the change from a theocracy to a neutral state, and from a representative form of democracy to a participative form of democracy. The crucial question at this stage is: How should the church as institution fulfil its prophetic task towards society within the new constitutional context? This article attempts to answer the question by focusing on constitutional guarantees of religious rights, main principles for prophetic witness within a neutral state and pluralist society, and existing church structures for public engagement. The hypothesis of this article is that reformed churches should become involved in the legislative processes of the country by establishing a reformed monitoring body of legislation. This will be the most effective way of influencing public policy.


Constitutional State; Monitoring; Public Witness; Religious Rights


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