Item – Theses Canada

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Pinsent, William Paul,1958-
The institutionalization of experiential religion : a study of Newfoundland Pentecostalism.
M.A. -- Memorial University of Newfoundland, 1998
Ottawa : National Library of Canada = Bibliothèque nationale du Canada, [2001]
3 microfiches
Includes bibliographical references.
This thesis examines the degree to which changes occurring in the Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland reflect the sociological process of institutionalization in a context of secularization. The analysis includes an examination of changes that have occurred in the movement from its inception in 1910 up to the present. Methodologically the thesis uses heuristic constructs developed by Max Weber (1864-1920), Ernst Troeltsch (1865-1923), H. Richard Niebuhr (1894-1962), and Bryan R. Wilson (1926- ): sect, denomination and church. These types provide for a continuum along which a religious group's progress can be understood during its development. When specific characteristics of the typology are applied to the Newfoundland Pentecostal movement, it is suggested that the initial introversionist Pentecostal sect, which was characterized by an experiential religiosity, a distinct holiness ethos, and immanent eschatology, evolved into a full fledged denomination, with all the bureaucratic structural supports of an institutionalized religion. The thesis argues that--while the initial religious group under the leadership of Alice Belle Garrigus (1858-1949) was an introversionist sect--by the early 1920s characteristics of a conversionist sect were becoming evident. It is argued that secularization has had a transformative effect on the ideology and praxis of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)