Dawid P Mouton

Dawid is currently a lecturer in Practical Theology (Pastoral Care) at the University of the Free State (UFS), Bloemfontein, South Africa.  He is also a licenced minister of the Uniting Reformed Church in Southern Africa, and will be ordained in the Heatherdale Congregation in Bloemfontein in December 2013.  In addition to a B.Th. and M.Th. (Clinical Pastoral Care) from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, he also holds BSc and BA degree from the University of Namibia and an MSc from the University of Cape Town, South Africa.  His research interest is in community pastoral care and he hopes to contribute to a deepening in understanding of community trauma and pastoral care.

In 2013 Dawid was accepted to start his Phd studies at the VU University.  The preliminary title of his project is “Communities facing disruption: A pastoral approach to issues of trauma and restoration.”.

The study intends to investigate the impacts of different disruptive and traumatic events in three different communities in South Africa.  Two of the selected communities is situated in mining regions, whereas the third one is situated in the city of Bloemfontein. The key disruptive events investigated are: development induced relocation, the tragic death of so-called illegal miners and community violence.  The overall aim of this research is to discern an adequate pastoral response to disruptive events and processes affecting community well-being and cohesion, based on in-depth description of the community processes in coping with such disruptive events.  The research question(s) has been formulated as follows: What can pastoral care in local congregations contribute to communities facing disruption and tragedy?  

Sub-questions related to this are:

  • In what ways are communities affected by disruption and tragedy? (descriptive)
  • How do communities respond to disruption and tragedy? (descriptive)
  • What pastoral and spiritual resources are available to communities, and are these sufficient for enabling restoration for individuals and communities experiencing disruption and tragedy? (descriptive and evaluative)
  • What would be an adequate pastoral care response to help affected communities to (1) articulate their traumatic experiences and (2) provide a framework for restoration? (evaluative and strategic)

Supervisors: Prof Ruard Ganzevoort (VU) and Prof Jan-Albert van den Berg (UFS)