The activity of the pentecostalist communities in Karelia in the early XXI century
The research work is aimed at identifying the unique characteristics of the Karelian Pentecostalist communities in the early XXI century. Nowadays, there are ecclesiastical agencies of the main world religions, except Buddhism, work in Karelia. However, Christian religious groups is more spread than others.
One of the basic religion sects of Christianity is Protestantism presented by a wide range of different trends. Among evangelic organizations functioning in Karelia, The church of Christians of Evangelical faith is the most fast- evolving one, attracting a vast number of adepts.
The analysis of the activity of the Pentecostalist Communities concerning their adepts in Karelia in the early XXI century was done on the basis of official documents and the adepts' interviews.
It was explored how the conceptualization of participants of the Pentecostalist Communities is in congruence with statements maintained in official documents. Thanks to the research program 'Neighborhood of the Orthodoxy and Protestantism in Russian province and border-zone' there was done a comparative analysis of the transcripts of interviews with adepts of the Pentecostalist Communities of Sortavala and Pitkaranta cities and Principles of social conception of The Russian consolidated Union of Christians of Evangelical faith. The comparative analysis was done in terms of West Siberia and Republic of Karelia.
It was found out that the Pentecostalism, in spite of similarity with other evangelic trends has a set of outstanding features, for example, baptism by fire, gift of tongues, getting skills of prediction. Special aspects specified its history. The activity of foreign missionaries determined fast expansion of The Pentecostalism in many countries including Russia.
During the XXth century, the activity of the Pentecostalist Communities in Russia depended on the state policy in the religious sphere, so there were some periods of time when the activity of evangelic groups were handicapped. Only after 1990, keeping with new legislation, the Pentecostalist Communities got the opportunity to enter their agencies in the official list of religious organizations. In Karelia The Union of Christians of Evangelical faith was registered in 1998.
A comparative analysis of Pentecostalists's interviews allowed representing some discrepancies with Principles of social conceptions. This was reflected in the attitude of spirituals towards regular reading of Bible, abstentionism, constant visiting divine services. Questions connected with intrafamilial relations, celebrations, entertainment are not covered exactly. In this matter, respondents gave different answers, related with their private judgments.
In terms of conscious choice of religion and baptism by fire, opinions of respondents matched the pentecostalist foundations. Pentecostalists differ by tolerance to relations with other Christian religious groups, apart from denomination, which are varied by usual ad-din (for example, Jehovah's Witnesses).
О. Г. Усова
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