ISBN 9781990931246
Pages 398
Dimensions 210 x 148 mm
Published 2021
Publisher African Perspectives, South Africa
Format Paperback

Sowing in Tears

A Documentary History of the Church Struggle Against Apartheid 1960 - 1990

by Malesela John Lamola

A historicist interpretation of how the Christian religion, whose theology had notoriously been used to foster coloniality and explicitly nurture apartheid philosophy, had transformed itself into an intellectual force and an organisational bulwark of the struggle for freedom in South Africa. This is presented through documents and statements of the ecumenical movement which attest to the development of successive theological positions that were being arraigned against the apartheid regime. The reflection covers the period from the year 1960, which signaled the beginning of an identifiable Christian tradition of protest against political oppression and repression in South Africa, that is, from the Cottesloe Conference following the Sharpeville Massacre, to the 'Standing for the Truth Campaign' on the eve of FW De klerk's February 2 1990 Speech in Parliament. The gallant resistance of the people and the churches of South Africa is presented here as both a living record of the tumultuous past, and an inspiration for new local and global struggles.

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'A wonderful book of historical importance documenting the church's role and participation in the struggle against Apartheid. It speaks fluently of theologians and ecumenists' challenges and assumptions about the separation of religion and public discourse, outlining protests, meetings and other movements which took place. Yet it also remains a story of prayer and theological convergences. Outlining acts of public intervention by religious leaders and individuals.'

DR BRIGALIA BAM - is the retired General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches and former Chair of the Electoral Commission of South Africa

'This is a breathtaking book - first for people who have experienced this struggle in their life-time; secondly, for every historian who can rejoice to have the full text of the relevant documents reprinted - not only as such but carefully contextualized in relation to the historical developments; thirdly, for theologians, who will find highly innovative theological discoveries which until this day shape the ecumenical discourse.' 

PROFESSOR ULRICH DUCHROW, Professor of Systematic Theology at the University of Heidelberg

About the Author

Malesela John Lamola

Malesela John Lamola is an Associate Professor at the University of Johannesburg’s Institute for Intelligent Systems. He obtained his BTh degree from UNISA, the PhD in Philosophy and Theology from Edinburgh University, and an MBA from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Daytona Beach, USA). During the 1980s he worked at the Institute for Contextual Theology (ICT) and the South African Council of Churches (SACC). His current work is focused on the ramifications of technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution on the cultural and political sovereignty of Africa.