Cornerstone Institute Lecturer’s research explores the current landscape of Theological Education in Cape Town.
Selena Headley is a Community Development and Sociology Lecturer at Cornerstone Institute. She is also a PhD candidate in Practical Theology at the University of Pretoria. Selena is concerned about the ways Theological Education and formation is shaping students towards transformative thinking and actions in Cape Town. She is in the final stages of completing her doctoral dissertation, ‘A praxis-based approach to theological education: A Cape Town case study.’
Selena was one of 14 researchers across the continent who participated in a three-year research project entitled Urban Africa 2050: Imagining Theological Education/Formation for Flourishing African Cities, led by Prof Dr Stephan de Beer from the Faculty of Theology and Religion at the University of Pretoria. All the researchers explored similar questions about theological education and formation in light of their cities’ current and future urban realities.
“Aspirational terms such as world-class, resilient, climate-friendly and a just city stand in contrast to adverse terms such unequal, divided, colonial, violent and segregated to describe the present and future state of the City of Cape Town. How do institutions offering tertiary qualifications in theology engage with the competing narratives of the city in the preparation of faith-based practitioners?” (Headley: 2021)
Selena is curious about how urban challenges are being featured in multiple institutions of higher learning across the city. According to Selena, the context of Cape Town as one of the most unequal cities in the world provides an essential backdrop for institutions offering theological qualifications.
Selena’s recently published article in the Missionalia: Southern African Journal of Missiology titled “Just City-making” in Cape Town: Liberating Theological Education explores the current landscape of theological education offered in higher education institutions in Cape Town in terms of an urban focus. In the article, the connection between theological education and ministry formation of faith-based practitioners is explored in light of Cape Town’s urban futures. Her article applies a praxis-based approach as a research methodology to see how participants imagined the future of theological education deeply integrated into the fabric of the city.
To Read Selena’s full article, visit: https://missionalia.journals.ac.za/pub/article/view/358/pdf
To learn more about the Urban Africa 2050: Imagining Theological Education/Formation for Flourishing African Cities project visit, http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95072020000300001&lng=en&nrm=iso.