Doing Reconciliation Book [eBook]
by Alexander Venter
Doing Reconciliation is a comprehensive study (406 pages) about the urgent need to dismantle racism and work for reconciliation in both the church and world. It is about making peace between people, groups and structures, and building an environment of mutual respect, human rights and Shalom (the Hebrew concept for God's societal harmony, order, blessing and prosperity).
The book has come out of Alexander Venter and Trevor Ntlhola's journey in dealing with their own racism and seeking reconciliation through the 1980s and 1990s in apartheid South Africa, through a community called åJohweto's the symbolic reconciliation of Johannesburg and Soweto. They begin with their stories, and then Alexander addresses the apartheid history with its legacy of pain, and our need to deal with it in order to capitalize on the miracle that we have lived through (the 1994 elections).
The main body of the book is a Biblical understanding of racism, reconciliation and transformation, and it presents practical models of how to do one-on-one, group and structural reconciliation. This includes 19 suggested actions and programs for both individuals and churches to bring healing and reconciliation in society. Alexander also gives guidance on how Christians can think about and respond to 4 international social-ethical issues, and 7 more South African based social challenges the latter are the 7 SACLA giants (the South African Christian Leadership Assembly, that met in July 2003, identified 7 giants that we must defeat in South Africa in order to have a meaningful future together).
Dr Derek Morphew concludes the book with an excellent exposition of Christians and Human Rights, and how we can work to create a societal culture of basic human rights. Although the book comes from the South African context, it clearly addresses a theology and confronts challenges that are internationally applicable, for all churches in all nations. Doing Reconciliation is intended for all who concerned about the church?s integrity and witness in society for those who want to make the world a better place to live in.