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New Ways of Being Pentecostal in Latin America

The explosive growth of Pentecostalism has radically transformed Latin America's religious landscape within the last half century or so. In a region where Catholicism reigned hegemonic for centuries, the expansion of Pentecostalism has now resulted in a situation of religious pluralism and competition, bearing much more resemblance to the United States than to the Iberian motherlands. Furthermore, the fierce competition from Pentecostal churches has inspired significant renewals of Latin American Catholicism, most notably the growth of a Catholic Charismatic movement. However, another and more recent source of religious pluralism and diversity in Latin America is an increasing pluralization and diversification of Pentecostalism itself and of the ways in which individual Pentecostals exercise their faith. By carefully exploring this diversification, the book at hand breaks new ground in the literature on Latin American Christianity. Particular attention is focused on new ways of being Pentecostal and on the consequences of recent transformations of Christianity for individuals, faith communities and societies. More specifically, the chapters of the book look into certain transformations of Pentecostalism such as: theological renewals and new kinds of religious competition between Pentecostal churches; a growing political and civic engagement of Pentecostals; an observed de-institutionalization of Pentecostal religious life and the negotiation individual Pentecostal identities, composed of multiple intra- and extra-ecclesial points of identification; and the emergence of new generations of Pentecostals (children of Pentecostal parents), many of whom have higher levels of education and higher incomes than the previous generations within their churches. In addition, Catholic responses to Pentecostal competition are also addressed in several chapters of the book.
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Table of Contents

Introduction: New Ways of Being Pentecostal in Latin America, Martin Lindhardt 1. Latin American Charisma: The Pentecostalization of Christianity in the Region, Andrew Chesnut 2. Glocalization and Protestant and Catholic Contestations in the Brazilian Religious Economy, Stephen Hunt 3. Catholic Pentecostals-The Betwixt Identity and Increasing Influence of Catholic Charismatics in Guatemala, Jakob Egeris Thorsen 4. Time to Move On: Pentecostal Church Shifting and Religious Competition in Chile, Martin Lindhardt 5. Pentecostal Congregations and Religious Competition in Rural Mexico, Toomas Gross 6. Growing Up Pentecostal in Brazil: Parents, Children and the Transfer of Faith, George St. Clair 7. `We, the Youth, Need to be Effusive': Pentecostal Youth Culture in Chile, Martin Lindhardt 8. To Serve or to Save: The Social Commitment of Chilean Evangelicals (1990-2014), Evguenia Fediakova 9. Pentecostal Conversion Careers, Generational Effects, and Political Involvement in Latin America, Henri Gooren 10. Toward a Pentecostal Hermeneutics of Social Engagement in Central America? Bridging the Church and the World in El Salvador and Guatemala, Virginia Garrard-Burnett 11. Speaking up against Abortion and Homosexuality: Pentecostalism and Politics in Contemporary Brazil, Maria das Dores Campos Machado Afterword, David Martin and Bernice Martin

About the Author

Martin Lindhardt is associate professor of cultural sociology at the University of Southern Denmark.


Over the past generation, Pentecostalism in Latin America has undergone fundamental shifts, as it adapts to hemispheric transformations in class dynamics, generational identities, popular culture, and politics. This important volume grapples deeply with these changes, pushing us to understand them in light of new theoretical insights about conversion, spiritual careers, and the relationship between religion and society. No scholar or journalist interested in Pentecostalism in Latin America will be able to ignore this book.--John Burdick, Syracuse University A much-needed exploration of new trends in the pluralization of Latin American religious practice. Lindhardt brings together an impressive array of scholars to explore new Pentecostal and Catholic identities, theological innovations, and the impact of second and third generation converts on their churches and society. The book is a must-read for understanding the complexities of the ongoing pentecostalization of religion in Latin America.--Timothy J. Steigenga, Florida Atlantic University

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