n Stellenbosch Theological Journal - Human displacement as challenge to pastoral caregiving. Towards a hermeneutical design for an existential and diagnostic approach to ecclesial welcoming

Volume 5 Number 1
  • ISSN : 0028-2006
  • E-ISSN: 2226-2385



The current refugee and migrant crisis are closely connected to a kind of global fear and paranoia: The fear for the outsider and stranger (xenophobia). The basic dilemma of displacement and the quest for home, fuel the spiritual question of the meaning and significance of life. It is argued that an existential approach to the predicament of displacement can help to understand the complexity of the crisis. The article is an attempt to design a diagnostic model for a hermeneutical approach that deals with the importance of place and space. In this regard, the notion of hospitality should be introduced as a basic pastoral category in the attempt to address the threat of xenophobia. A diagnostic chart is designed as hermeneutical tool for a practical ecclesiology of home and compassionate understanding of the crisis of displacement and dislocation.

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