Pentecostalism in Finland: the precarious beginning
Holm, Nils G. (2015)
Holm, Nils G.
The Donner Institute, Åbo Akademi
Nils G. Holm is a professor emeritus of Åbo Akademi University, Finland. In addition to his extensive research among the Swedish-speaking Pentecostalists in Finland, he has been teaching world religions for more than 30 years and especially psychology of religion. For several years he also taught religion at Mahidol University in Bangkok. He holds a Dr.Theol. from Uppsala University, Sweden.
The article presents the arrival of the Pentecostal movement into Finland. It is argued that a totally incorrect picture of the early years of Pentecostalism in Finland is conveyed if it is limited to the activities which took place in Helsinki in 1911–12 and the movement that emerged from there, as previous research has done. Without the earlier revival in Ostrobothnia and other activities in various parts of the country, the Pentecostal movement would not have been as successful as it was at the beginning of the 1910s. Barratt’s visit to Ostrobothnia meant that new life was breathed into the dormant spiritual movement. In other places, the Pentecostal revival could connect to other kinds of preparatory activities. This is one of the factors explaining why Barratt achieved such a great success and Pentecostalism was received so positively in the early 1910s.