FACING DIVERSITY OR LONGING FOR HOMOGENEITY? DISCUSSION WITHIN THE DRC ON RELIGIOUS EDUCATION

Wolfram Weisse

Abstract


The Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) in South Africa can be regarded as one of the
important pressure groups for religious education (RE) in schools. Based on a case
study this contribution focuses on the following question: Does the DRC opt for a
traditional, Christian National approach of RE in public schools or does it open up
to new forms of RE, reflecting the religious and cultural diversity in the country?
The contribution investigates this question from three perspectives: The development
of ideas on the official level of synodical statements, the semi-official level of
reports in the church’s newspaper Die Kerkbode, and the opinions of students at
grassroots level. We find both an increasing willingness to open up to diversity and
a line of thought that leans toward isolation and disrespect of other religions. The
question of accepting diversity in the field of religion is crucial for the broader field
of diversity in the country.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7833/89-0-1014

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ISSN 2305-445X (online); ISSN 0254-1807 (print)

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