Original Research

Veranderingen in samenleving en kerk en de gevolgen voor het beroep van pastor

Gerben Heitink
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 25, No 2 | a283 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v25i2.283 | © 2004 Gerben Heitink | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 05 October 2004 | Published: 06 October 2004

About the author(s)

Gerben Heitink, Universiteit van Pretoria, South Africa

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This article is an attempt to open up a new perspective on the crisis of christianity and church in the context of Western Europe, especially The Netherlands. Since half a century the secularisation paradigm has  been the dominant perspective to explain  this development. But a long-term historical perspective offers a wider
horizon. Through the ages there have been different  types of christianity (E.Troeltsch): the public church in relation to the civil society, the free church emphasizing church membership (the priesthood of the believers) and the more individualized mystic type of faith. Since the  separation  of church and state untill totday the second type had been the dominant one. A consequence of  the cultural  shift from modernity to postmodernity is the rise of ‘wild devotion’ conform the third type of a more individualized way of life. This article pays attention to the challenges of these  developments  to the practice of church life and the pastoral profession. 


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