Die invloed van sekularisasie op die NG Kerk: ’n kerkhistories-sosiologiese perspektief


  • Pieter Kruger
  • Johan van der Merwe




Social construction, Structural secularization, Religious construction, Secularization of social culture, Secularization of personal, Privatization of religion, Transposition of religion


The influence of secularisation on the DR Church: A church historical and sociological perspective The influence of religious discourses and institutions in South Africa, as elsewhere, diminishes because of structural secularisation. Social secularisation as another form of secularisation compromises the 'necessity’ for religion in modern day social culture. Humanistic Western Individualism is the dominant social meaning system (also in South Africa) best associated with this process. The actualisation of its priorities (personal freedom, privacy, emancipation of the self, freedom of choice and to strive for personal affluence) plays a significant role in the lives of the Dutch Reformed Church’s congregants. Social secularisation liberates people from ecclesiastical doctrine as regulatory for personal life and reason and marks the growing indifference to the official church. This leads to a legitimacy crisis concerning established religious meaning systems. Ironically religion doesn’t disappear altogether because of secularisation. It does however, transposes traditional forms of collective religion because the sustainment of religion as phenomenon depends increasingly on religiosities in the private sphere. Consequently, the proliferation of different personal, religious beliefs and practices also increases religious pluralism within the Dutch Reformed Church, challenging its reformed identity.






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