More from Kraus … A Theological Basis for Intervention Ministries

First, then, let me explain what I mean by “catalytic.” In chemistry, of which I know very little, a catalytic agent is one that induces change without compounding with and changing the molecular structure of its host elements. “Catalysis,” however, is a process of modification, of releasing the host element from inhibitive obstructions and inducing intrinsic changes in it.

Using this as a metaphor I would describe a social catalyst as a change agent that induces desired modifications in the host culture which are integral and intrinsic to its well being. The implication is that although the changes are desirable and desired, there are inhibiting elements that prevent the changes taking place. The catalyst attempts to work respectfully and unintrusively to induce changes that will enhance the host culture.

One thought on “Catalyst

  1. keat lim

    hey that’s a pretty good and accurate definition. very very helpful illustration to spark off some meaningful discussion.
    as long as i can remember, we at SU has long self-proclaimed ourselves as catalysts in the ministry sense. it’s a difficult role to play but nevertheless and challenging one too.
    so, thanks for the reminder =)

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