Go Tell It On The Mountains: Tracing Evangelical Activity in Peru from the Early Dominican Missions to the Contemporary Ministries of Buckner Perú
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In the nearly five centuries spanning 1532 to 2015, Peru has experienced three primary political eras. From early colonialism, to nineteenth-century elite republicanism, up to twentieth-century democratization, Peru has evolved as a state and as a nation. Speaking to its nationhood, Peru’s religious identity has long been marked by the hegemony of the Catholic Church. In the most recent decades, however, Protestantism, particularly Pentecostalism, has won converts through grassroots missionary endeavors. Although the contemporary Protestant movement appears to be a sporadic boom, it actually owes much to its evangelical predecessors. Missionary strategies in Peru have evolved alongside political eras, such that the establishment of Catholicism in the colonial era, gave way to the introduction of Protestantism in the republican era, which in turn opened up the “religious market” for the twentieth-century surge in Protestant adherents and democratic participants. These three movements will be analyzed individually, and cumulatively as each comes into partial expression in the work of Buckner International in present-day Peru.