The present article is based on the results of a research carried out in several Congolese “refugee churches” in the area of Nsambya/Katwe in Kampala (Uganda), concerning the aspects of spiritual warfare and of deliverance in connection with the condition of refugee. Starting from these dimensions, in this article I explore the connections Congolese Pentecostals establish between their being refugees and the fact of being under the attack of demonic spirits. The extreme insecurity of the conditions of life they experience in Kampala push many believers to turn to Pentecostal churches searching for divine protection. In this situation, Pentecostal churches are on the one hand charged of the control of the spiritual disorder, through the practices of deliverance, especially in their collective expression. On the other hand, they act as amplifiers of the refugees’ fears: by justifying the frequent recourse to spiritual warfare, they fuel an imaginary in which those who suffer are extremely vulnerable to the demonic attacks. Finally, with the insistence on the need to accept the hardships of life and to surrender to Jesus Christ in order to obtain his protection, Congolese Pentecostal churches shift the discourse of suffering from the level of everyday life to the one of the Manichean struggle between Good and Evil.

Spiriti in diaspora. Rifugio e lotta spirituale nelle chiese pentecostali congolesi di Kampala

Gusman, Alessandro
2016

Abstract

The present article is based on the results of a research carried out in several Congolese “refugee churches” in the area of Nsambya/Katwe in Kampala (Uganda), concerning the aspects of spiritual warfare and of deliverance in connection with the condition of refugee. Starting from these dimensions, in this article I explore the connections Congolese Pentecostals establish between their being refugees and the fact of being under the attack of demonic spirits. The extreme insecurity of the conditions of life they experience in Kampala push many believers to turn to Pentecostal churches searching for divine protection. In this situation, Pentecostal churches are on the one hand charged of the control of the spiritual disorder, through the practices of deliverance, especially in their collective expression. On the other hand, they act as amplifiers of the refugees’ fears: by justifying the frequent recourse to spiritual warfare, they fuel an imaginary in which those who suffer are extremely vulnerable to the demonic attacks. Finally, with the insistence on the need to accept the hardships of life and to surrender to Jesus Christ in order to obtain his protection, Congolese Pentecostal churches shift the discourse of suffering from the level of everyday life to the one of the Manichean struggle between Good and Evil.
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Urban refugees, Pentecostalism, spiritual warfare, spiritual vulnerability, urban and religious transformations
Gusman, Alessandro
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/1660757
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