Practical Theology and Decoloniality in Brazil

reflections on a method in process

  • Valburga Schmiedt Streck
  • Júlio Cézar Adam Faculdade EST


If we understand Practical Theology as the theoretical reflection of religious praxis in the context of Latin America from the paradigm of decoloniality, what would be its method? The reflection on the method of Practical Theology in Latin America was in close dialogue with Liberation Theology and its see-judge-act method. This means that doing Practical Theology in this context has always had a strong relationship with the practice of exclusion and socio-political vulnerability. All theology was seen with a second action, since practice and life, especially the context of the poor, was the locus theologicus par excellence. What does this mean from a decolonial perspective? In a decolonial perspective, would the method see-judge-act be the most appropriate? To what extent will seeing the reality be influenced by this paradigm? To what extent would judging from scripture and theological tradition be a way of reinforcing a certain coloniality? In the same way, to what extent action, religious practices, whether the ministry or religious forms in the context of culture and society, can express decoloniality. On the other hand, Latin America has contributed internationally to research practices in the social and human sciences, such as the Participatory Research (Carlos Rodrigues Brandão and Paulo Freire) and Participatory Action Research (Orlando Fals Borda). This paper therefore problematizes this question: which method will serve Practical Theology in Latin America from a decolonial perspective?