The purpose of the study was to investigate the challenges faced by priests in dealing with boys that impregnated girls in their parishes and also ways of dealing with such challenges in selected parishes in the Diocese of Mthatha the Eastern Cape Province. The study mainly focused on rural parishes. A qualitative research method was used and a Case Study design was used to conduct the study. The sample consisted of four priests, sixteen youth leaders and four teenage boys from the four chosen parishes. An interview schedule designed by the researcher was used to gather data. The collected data was analysed using codes, segments, categories and themes. The researcher interpreted the data and the findings of the study showed that cases of boys who impregnated girls were never reported to priests as they found it difficult to treat boys and girls equally.
The study showed that, the priests and youth leaders in the four selected parishes felt that there should have been parental involvement in churches when dealing with youth behaviours. The study showed that, boys who impregnated girls were given a nine months suspension period and were prohibited from any church activity nor youth guild, but during the process of suspension, the study showed that priests from the four research sites organised some therapeutic programmes for the boys so that they didn't feel neglected because of their risky behaviour.
The study further showed that priests and youth leaders had to assist teenage boys by organizing catch up programmes so that they could offer some advices to those who were still young. According to the findings of the study it was clear that the issue of boys who impregnated girls really affected some parishes in terms of male teenage discipline, teenage pregnancy as a social problem in church, challenges faced by Priests and church leaders, teenage pregnancy and youth discipline, pregnancy and youth in society and in church. The researcher recommended that, the church should develop sexual youth programmes where parents would be involved so as to take part in the programme. Furthermore, the Government Departments should also be involved, like the Department Education, Social Department and Social Workers so as to formulate a policy on teenage boys who impregnated girls so ensure that they didn't feel neglected.
Dissertation (Master of Arts in Theology)--University of Pretoria, 2017.