262pp., maps, paperback, Stellenbosch, 2020
"At opening this book, everything one has learned or thought about 'urban ministry' is challenged, and changed. Stephan de Beer offers a fresh, exciting and thoroughly engaging approach ... the book is a serious grappling with the daunting realities of a shadowed, marginalised, urban life ... This book invites the reader to join the people of the cities under siege by failed policies, empty promises, and disastrous politics, in their struggles for meaningful life" Allan Boesak, Professor of Black Liberation Theology and Ethics, University of Pretoria
"The concept of the urban cry is both very real and theoretically rich, reaching back into the archives towards Franz Fanon's expression of the 'weep' that emerges from oppressive colonial constrictions that manifest in both physical and metaphysical space. As a response, the clown represents a figure messy enough to move within the contemporary movements that seek to unravel this history and remake the cities shaped by those conditions ... Ndifuna Ukwazi, Reclaim the City and other land and housing activists have experienced the friendship and solidarity that de Beer imagines in our partnerships with progressive people of faith. We celebrate the work that they do by urging the Church and other religious bodies towards urban justice ... It encourages me that this collection of essays might guide others to similar commitment, while simultaneously offering activists a theological lens for their work that may speak very deeply to the spirit of many." Mandisa Shandu, Director of Ndifuna Ukwazi
Stephan de Beer is Director of the Centre for Faith and Community, and Associate Professor of Practical Theology at the University of Pretoria.