Pastoral care to Christian youth in South Africa who experience unwanted LGB attraction
Ashamu, Christiana Abosede
MetadataShow full item record
This one issue, “Same-sex union and the church”, has been the forefront debate of the church and society at large. The dissertation illustrates a report by the Oasis Foundation on exclusion and indicates that LGB individuals are up to 12 times more likely to experience mental health difficulties. The research done in preparation for this study illustrates a report by the Oasis Foundation on exclusion and LGB individuals are up to 12 times more likely to experience mental health difficulties. The study demonstrates ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ that it is church goers and Christian leaders, accompanied by the media and political debate that are fuelling negative messages about same-sex relationships in society. While previous studies have shown the damage done to LGB individuals within Christian denominations, this is the first study that seems to justify the long-held assumption that church practices and teachings are seriously damaging the mental health of LGB individuals outside the Church; often with life-threatening consequences. This dissertation studies the pastoral care to youth who experience LGB attraction but do not desire this attraction because they believe it is wrong in the eyes of God. The central theoretical argument of this research is that theologically grounded guidelines on pastoral care to youth who experience unwanted LGB attraction can enhance churches’ pastoral care to these youth in South Africa. Hence the aim of this research is to provide guidelines for pastoral care to youth in South Africa who experience unwanted LGB attraction. The practical theology by Osmer Richard is used as a model for this study. The question regarding the descriptive-empirical task is: ‘What is going on in connection with the youth’s sexual attraction and pastoral care given to youth who experience unwanted LGB attraction in the South African context?’ In a descriptive-empirical task the information is gathered by means of data collection through scholar articles, online articles, journals, personal stories and literature reviews (Osmer, 2008:4). A literature study of various related sciences was conducted in order to reach the second objective of this study. The interpretative task in this study seeks to understand “why it is going on’ (Osmer, 2008:81). Why is unwanted LGB attraction becoming a growing concern among Christian youth in South Africa? The normative task asks: What ought to be going on? It seeks to separate God’s will for present realities. Osmer refers to the present task as prophetic discernment. Though the prophets spoke normatively for God; they were additionally interpreters of each past tradition and gift revelation. The term ‘prophetic discernment’ is meant to capture ‘the interaction of divine revealing and human shaping as predict discernment. The predict workplace is the discernment of God’s Word to the covenant individuals in a very explicit time and place’ (Osmer, 2008:133). ‘Prophetic discernment involves each divine revealing and therefore the human shaping of God’s word’ (Osmer, 2008:134-135). The objective of the pragmatic task is to supply congregational leaders with steerage for leading congregations through the method of amendment. It seeks to answer the question: How might we respond? What program will Christians develop for pastoral care to the youth with unwanted LGB in our congregation?
- Theology