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Living the Future in Dialogue

Towards a New Integral and Transformative Model of Religious Education for Nigeria in the 21 st Century

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Chizurum Ann Ugbor

This book challenges the faith-oriented conversion that encourages an exclusivist and monological approach to religious education in schools. «Living the Future in Dialogue» develops a new pedagogical paradigm for Nigeria: the «Integral and Transformative Model». Using a systematic approach, the book discusses the Christian tradition in light of the existence of other religions and worldviews. Religious education must encourage pupils to develop their own religious identities and respond to plurality to become members of a multicultural and multi-religious society. It is presented as an enrichment of a human being in relation to the self, world and God and the community as the locus where the human person is taught to develop the language of love, trust and hope.
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Chapter Five: Hermeneutical-Communicative Model of Religious Education in a Pluralist Society

Extract

The challenging reality to the present-day teachers of RE is how to present RE to be meaningful for contemporary (Catholic) schools that have been permeated by religious plurality and socio-cultural contexts without losing sight on pupils’ particularity of Christian identity. The hermeneutical-communicative model (henceforth, HCM), which has its starting point in plurality and Christian identity is sensitive to the above challenging reality. The investigation reveals that the HCM not only take seriously the pluralistic nature of human experiences, the ideological characteristic of today’s world and the reality of many religious traditions and interpretations, but also presents the Christian tradition as a preferential option. Accordingly, the HCM was developed in Belgium at the end of the nineties as an answer to plurality, secularisation and socio-multicultural realities.

Thus, this section is divided into two sections. In section I, we shall historically examines the trends that led to opting for the HCM. To critically reflect on the practicality of the HCM, we shall in section II explore the meaning of the HCM, highlighting the promises (gains), challenges (risks/ambiguities) and possible ways of making the HCM of RE suitable in non-Western cultures.

It is significant to note that the pedagogy of RE in Europe has gone through an enormous evolution – mono-religious, anthropological and multi-religious. According to Didier Pollefeyt, the development of these pedagogical models between 1950s-20th century can be summed up “as the development of ‘learning in religion’ to ‘learning about religion.’”1 Pertaining to issues and crises of young...

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